If you are looking to rent an apartment in Oklahoma, you will need to prepare yourself for the application process. Renting an apartment is not as easy as it used to be. Today, property managers screen tenants in order to avoid leasing to a risky person that may skip out on rent later in the future.
This article will explain how you can hire a lawyer to clean up your background check before applying for a lease agreement.
Oklahoma Apartment Background Checks are stricter now than in the past
Renting an apartment is harder now than ever before, due to the increased demand from a high number of tenants, and a decrease in supply of housing.
The lack of supply of housing is from a number of factors over the past couple decades. In the early 2000’s, there was a large increase in supply of housing, as builders and developers had easy access to capital. With all the loans, the housing bubble grew bigger and bigger until it burst during the 2008 housing crisis. However, since 2008, there has not been enough development of new construction to keep up with growth.
Now in today’s current market, there is less construction of new housing and apartments, but an increase in the number of tenants and people looking for housing. Therefore, landlords and property managers have more people than ever asking to rent from them.
Apartments screen tenants by reviewing criminal history background reports
Because there are so many tenants applying for housing in Oklahoma, landlords and property managers take their time screening the tenants. Property managers may ask that all prospective tenants complete a written application. Some properties require application fees to be paid upfront before applying.
Then there are the background checks. Many landlords and property managers will conduct credit checks on prospective tenants. This is perfectly legal, and each apartment can set its own standards as to what credit scores are acceptable.
Most apartments will also require a criminal history report for any person applying to live on the premises. This is also perfectly legal, and most landlords do some type of criminal background check on prospective tenants.
Every landlord has different criteria for what is and is not acceptable. Most landlords do not allow serious felony convictions, especially within the last five to ten years. Some landlords do not allow any felony convictions, and others may have differing standards for felonies and misdemeanors.
Some apartment complexes will have policies against any felony conviction, and others will make exceptions for drug possession charges. However, many apartment complexes do not allow any type of drug possession charge, even misdemeanor offenses.
How to Prevent the Apartment Manager from seeing your criminal history in Oklahoma
There is a way to prevent property managers from seeing your criminal history on your background check in Oklahoma.
You may hire a lawyer to see if you qualify to expunge some or all of your convictions, arrests, and charges from your background check.
An expungement is a legal process to remove criminal charges from public records. How do you know if you qualify? You can read our Expungement Overview, or you can simply contact our office, either by phone or email. We can look up your criminal history report, and determine what charges qualify for expungement.