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Read further to learn more about rental applications in Idaho such as what fields should be included, what information a landlord can’t ask for, and what other Idaho-specific rental regulations apply to the rental application process.
What is a Rental Application?
When a new person applies to live in a unit that is for rent, a rental application is often the form that is used so that the landlord can gather some critical information about the person before accepting them into the unit as a tenant. In most cases, the document is going to be fairly simple to fill out, and it will require some information about the person that will allow the landlord to do a credit and a background check on the potential tenant. This will help the landlord to get to know the applicant and their situation before accepting them as a tenant to live in their property.
Idaho Rental Application Elements
Since this is a form that will be used to keep track of the applicant’s information, it is going to have to have certain sections on the document. These sections include:
Description of the Unit
In any rental application that needs to be filled out by the tenant, the first thing that should be seen on the document is a thorough description of the unit. Whether this unit is a single-family home, an apartment, a townhouse, or another type of living arrangement should be listed in this section as well as any identifying factors that will help a person determine which unit is being rented.
The next part that should be included in this section is the exact address of the unit. This will include the street number, the street name, the unit number, the city, and the county. The property will also need to be described for the potential tenant so that they know a bit more about the property before applying to live there. This will include the square footage of the unit as well as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms that are available in the space. If the unit is too small for a family, they may decide not to apply, so having all of the information on the application can help save some time.
In this section, the potential start date of the lease can be written to give the tenant a full picture of what the terms of the agreement when it is written, and what will be expected from them as a rent payment. This is not going to be required in an application in the state of Idaho, but it can help streamline the application process.
The next section will ask the applicant to give a bit of information about themselves. This will include things like their full legal name and a phone number where they can be reached. It is going to be used as a file on the applicant before they are accepted into the apartment, so their middle name, their date of birth, and their social security number may also be requested. Once the landlord has the applicant’s consent, this will provide the required information that they need to do a background check on the applicant. In addition, a photo ID will also be requested. In most cases, this will either be a driver’s license or an Idaho state ID.
If there is more than one phone number where the applicant can be reached, alternatives can be provided as well as the best time to contact them that way. An email may also be requested as an alternate form of contact for the applicant. A landlord may also request that the applicant provides them with information about the family members or the roommates that will be staying in the unit with them. This will also cover any children that will be living in the unit. This will allow the landlord to prepare for the potential of children living in the space before they move in.
In this section of the application, there are going to be a few questions about the rental history of the applicant. This information will help the landlord to see whether this applicant is a good fit for the unit. Most landlords will ask the applicant to list the last three locations that they have rented from. This will include the address of the rental location, the manager of the property, and a phone number where they can be reached. It will also typically ask how long the applicant lived at each location.
If there are not three locations that were rented before applying to this one, then they may not be required, especially if they have lived in the location for a long period of time. If they do not have the amount of rental history that is required by the landlord, the applicant may be asked to provide information for a guarantor. This is going to be a person who can vouch for the potential tenant and verify that they will be able to pay the rent on time. If something happens that they cannot pay the rent, then the guarantor will be responsible for paying it. This is also something that some landlords require tenants who have been evicted from a property in the past.
The next section is going to consider the financial history of the applicant. It will take into account the overall income of the applicant to give the landlord an impression of whether or not they will be able to pay their rent on time with their current income level. This will allow the potential tenant the chance to explain their income level and why they feel that they are a good fit.
Most landlords will ask the applicant to fill out information about the last five years of employment. The information that will be requested will often be the name of the employer, the name of the direct supervisor, the job title, and the amount of time that the applicant has been at the job. This section will also provide a space where the applicant can write down the amount of money that they make each year at their current place of employment. A phone number will be asked as well so that the landlord can make contact with the supervisor to get a picture of whether they will be reliable enough to have as a tenant.
Information about other sources of income will also be asked in this section. If the individual is retired, their pension is likely to have an impact on how well they pay the rent. Dividends and lottery winnings can also provide for a person who does not have an active place of employment that they are working at. These sources should be counted, especially if they are substantial.
Some landlords will ask about any savings accounts or credit cards that the applicant may have to get a better idea of their financial means. If the applicant has a substantial amount of money in their accounts, this could easily be used to pay the rent for a period of time. In addition, checking to see if the credit cards are in good standing will also help to provide a picture of the reliability of the potential tenant.
When an individual applies to live in a unit in the state of Idaho, all of the potential residents do not need to be on the application or the lease. This is something that is set aside for the primary applicant; however, only their income is what the landlord will have access to when they are considering whether or not they are a good fit for the unit. Some landlords will request that additional roommates fill out an application as well, but it may not be required that they fill out the entire application. If the roommates are not listed as tenants, they will never be left into the unit by the landlord because it will make them liable for their presence.
This section is designed to help a potential tenant know whether the unit that is for rent is a good fit for them. Many applicants will have a pet that they would like to bring with them when they move, and unfortunately for the pet owners, not all landlords will allow pets to dwell in the units that they rent. In some cases, the landlord will allow only a certain number of pets to live in the unit with the resident. They may only allow cats or certain breeds of dogs, so all of this information will need to be listed in the application so that the potential tenant knows whether this unit is right for their needs.
Another thing that will need to be considered in this section of the document is whether or not the landlord required pet owners to provide a deposit or a small amount monthly to keep the pet in the space. If any type of fee is required by the landlord, the tenant will need to know the details of the arrangement before they sign the actual lease agreement. Some landlords add a fee of $25 or more per pet onto the monthly rent, so this added fee may increase the rent a bit too much, which could make it a location that does not work as well.
When the landlord considers all of the applicants that are looking to move into the unit that is for rent, they are going to want to have a few references that they can contact to verify their character. This is going to need to be someone who has known the applicant for a very long time so that they can provide an honest opinion on whether they are a good fit for the property. Ideally, this is going to be a supervisor, a previous landlord, or a very close friend. It will not be allowed to be a family member of someone who is currently working for the applicant.
Most landlords will ask the applicant to provide the name of three different references. They will ask for a number where the person can be reached as well as an estimate on the number of years that the applicant and the reference have known each other. At the bottom of this section, there will be a space where the applicant can initial or sign, which will indicate that they give the landlord permission to contact the references that are listed.
This is a section where the landlord will be able to ask the applicant any questions that they feel are relative. They can ask if they have ever declared bankruptcy, been evicted, or convicted for a crime. If the potential tenant needs to answer yes to any of these questions, there will also be a space provided so that they can explain the circumstances that left them in the situation. When the landlord knows the full story, and it is provided by the applicant, they will have a better chance of getting accepted for the unit.
In addition, the landlord can ask about things like smoking so that they can offer a smoker a more convenient unit that may already have been used by a smoker in the past. Sometimes, a smoker may prefer a certain unit on the property so that they can easily walk outside when they would like to smoke, and this allows them to know all of the rules about smoking on the premises before they commit to a rental agreement.
This is a section that is often reserved for the potential tenant to provide the information to the landlord that they will need to know before they move into the unit. This could include information about needing an accessible parking space that is easy to reach from the unit, having an area that is located on the first floor, or that a service dog will be living with the applicant in their home.
In any application, the last part that will need to be filled out is the signature. In this section, the applicant will need to print, sign, and date the document, which implies that all of the information in the application is true.