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Maybe you want to be closer to your family. Maybe you’ve graduated from school and know that a new city has the greatest potential for you to find a job in your chosen field. Or maybe you’re just ready for a change. There are many good reasons to move to a different city in a different state.
But there’s one problem: You don’t have a job there.
That’s certainly something you need to fix, especially if you’re looking for a great place to live! So, what steps can you take to ensure your greatest chance of landing your dream apartment, even if you don’t have secured employment?
The answer: quite a few. Below, we’ll detail some strategies you can deploy and preparations you can make ahead of your big move!
The following are some strategies and tips you can utilize to your advantage when embarking upon this great new adventure.
When making a potential move to a city you’ve never lived in before, get online and stay there for a minimum of several weeks (if possible). Research everything you can think of. What neighborhoods are the best for young professionals? Which ones are good for young families? Which are quieter and more affordable, or which are close to nightlife? Anything you learn beforehand can be used to your advantage.
If you have friends living in the area, ask them all your questions. Get to understand the area like the back of your hand, as you’re going to want the most optimal living situation possible for your specific situation—especially considering that your move is going to be a cash burn until you can secure employment.
Securing optimal housing in most areas is difficult enough under regular circumstances. Your potential landlord is likely going to want to run a credit check and review your last paystub. Allay some of their fears when you’re applying for apartments by paying rent upfront. If you explain your situation to your landlord, they might be willing to bend on standard background checking if, say, you were to offer 4 months of rent in advance.
While this isn’t the “traditional” route, you’re playing into what every property manager and owner covets most: a guarantee. If you pay them upfront, they know they’re not losing money for a third of the year and that it’s likely you’re flush or driven enough to sort yourself out.
For many landlords, good credit history is a golden ticket to rent an apartment. If you’ve never missed a payment, have a fantastic reputation with previous landlords, and are also willing to pay a bit more upfront, it’s a safe bet that they'll be willing to hear you out.
If you have additional sources of income such as alimony, child support, legal awards, tax refunds, or property collateral, be prepared to show those to your potential landlord as well. It will all go towards bolstering your profile as a trustworthy, honest, and reliable tenant.
Pro-Tip: Prepare as many of your documents that might be found on an application ahead of time. Make several printed copies, place them in folders, and take a walk around your potential locations ahead of time. Drop-in, be ready to talk, and always be ready to fill out an application on the spot if necessary. Your potential landlord will appreciate your preparedness and urgency.
Being that you’re out of state, should you not be able to visit the premises, stay as active on email and your phone—without pestering—as possible.
This is especially common for fresh post-graduates. You may have a short credit history from the tiny line you had in college, but probably no real credit to speak of.
No potential landlord will be overly keen to let a young college graduate without a job or established credit history into their apartment building. They will, however, be keen to let your parents or established family members into the fold. If you are in a position to ask your family to cosign your lease, this can go a long way in appeasing concerns from conservative landlords.
If this is not possible, see if you can secure letters of recommendation from your current landlord that establishes you as a good resident. You paid on time, never had any trouble, etc. Every bit helps when trying to give your application an edge, especially in competitive cities.
While neither a management company nor an individual will be enthusiastic to accept a tenant with no proof of current income, there’s still hope (see our guide on How to Rent an Apartment Without Proof of Income ). When researching your living situation out of state, hone in on rentals by an owner. Apply and talk to them ahead of time (if possible). Explain your situation, job history, and the steps you’re taking to secure employment in that state or city. While it’s unlikely, it’s not unheard of that someone may come around after a sincere bending of the ear.
Additionally, look for places that are in search of a roommate. Sharing an apartment is always a cheaper option. Check out local Facebook groups of people in search of a tenant for that extra room in their home or apartment.
If you have the money for the move, yet you’re struggling to sort the logistics remotely, Zeus Living can help you! Zeus offers beautiful fully furnished housing for temporary stays of a month or longer. With Zeus, you can live in your new city prior to finding a permanent home and job! Explore new neighborhoods, balance your options, and get to know your new city without committing to a single place. With Zeus’ affordable and flexible options, you’ll have an easier time landing an apartment because you’ll actually be there to walk the premises, meet the property manager(s), and get to know them in person.
With Zeus, you’ll have all the opportunities that come from:
Lastly, as many renters know, good decisions aren’t usually made in a hurry. The “hidden gems” of the real estate market arise on a whim, the opportunity present for but a second, and you need to act fast. If you don't need to have a place locked in prior to you actually arriving in the new city, then you’ll have more flexibility in the choice you make, ultimately finding the best housing solution possible.
The easiest way to tackle this problem is by beginning the job hunt in the new location as immediately and aggressively as possible. Speak with old colleagues, join job boards, and look for associations in the area relevant to your skillset. Look for networking opportunities and, when they arise, capitalize.
If you can afford it, it’s wise to visit the place prior to your move—there, you can open doors, network, and try to line up employment prior to your departure.
Other great resources could be your university’s alumni network, family friends, friends of friends, scouting the local job journal or classifieds, scouring LinkedIn, or utilizing employment recruiters to help you find the perfect position. Funnily enough, perhaps the key to finding an apartment out of state without a job is, well, by getting a job.
The reality is that, job or not, apartment or not, the easiest way to solve these problems is by physically being in the new location. Zeus can help. With our incredible short-term rentals, you can get your boots on the ground without wasting money on sterile, expensive hotels or crashing on a couch for weeks on end. Moving to a different city, let alone a different state, is one of the most challenging things you can do. Make it easier on yourself with Zeus Living.
Cort. Top tips for moving out of state: How to move to a new city without a job lined up. https://blog.cort.com/moving/tips-for-moving-out-of-state-how-to-move-to-a-new-city-without-a-job-lined-up/
ForRent.com. How to Rent an Apartment When On the Move and with No Job. https://www.forrent.com/blog/apartment-hunting/how-to-rent-an-apartment-when-on-the-move-with-no-job/
Rentonomics. How To Rent an Apartment Out of State. https://www.apartmentlist.com/rentonomics/renting-apartment-remotely/
The Spruce. Moving to A New City Without a Job. https://www.thespruce.com/can-i-move-without-a-job-2435855
Monster. Moving Without a Job? Try These Strategies. https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/relocation-moving-without-a-job
The Nest. How to Rent a House When Relocating and Looking for a Job. https://budgeting.thenest.com/rent-house-relocating-looking-job-25297.html
The Nest. How to Rent an Apartment with No Job. https://budgeting.thenest.com/rent-apartment-job-25853.html
ApartmentRentals.com. 6 Tips for Renting an Apartment without Verifiable Income. https://ohmyapt.apartmentratings.com/6-tips-for-renting-an-apartment-without-verifiable-income.html