Finding the right home can be challenging under the best circumstances, even more so when you’re not prepared. Use these tips to get your rental application in the best shape possible.

Are you hunting for a new property? The rental market can be tough, so it’s important to give your rental application the best chance to stand out from the pack.

We’ve pulled together some tips to help you wow the real estate agent and secure the home you want.

Make yourself known to the agent

They say the early bird gets the worm. Call the property manager as soon as you spot a home you love – it’ll show you’re proactive and keen to start a conversation. This is also a great opportunity to ask about available viewing times, the length of the lease, and whether pets will be allowed.

Come prepped with your documents

Preparation is key. If you’ve rented before, you’ll know there’s a lot of paperwork to be completed as part of any application, so make sure you have your go-to documents available. It’ll streamline the process and hopefully fast-track your application.

Remember that you’ll likely need a passport or driver’s licence as identification and payslips showing you’re employed and receiving a regular income. Reference details from an employer or past landlord are a handy addition. If you’re moving with housemates, ensure they’ve got their documents ready to go too! Make copies of all your documents and drop them into a folder for the agent.

Look smart – and be punctual

If there’s a viewing scheduled for the rental you’re interested in, make sure you show up early and stay awhile. Dress well and start a conversation with the property manager or leasing manager there. Tell them what you like about the place and share a little about yourself. This will make it clear to the agent that you’re interested and make you memorable when you send a follow-up email.

Fill out your Renter Resume application online

Spotted a great property online? Check to see if there’s an application you can fill out right away. This can signal to future landlords and property managers that you’re prepared and serious. If the rental is listed on, start by completing a Renter Resume. This free, easy tool lets you securely share your information like employment and income info, rental history and references.

Use your Renter Resume bio to include a short introduction about yourself and why you’d make the perfect tenant. You can share your profile with any landlord/property manager when you’re ready to send an application.

Be willing to sign a longer lease

Signing a longer lease is a great way to show your commitment, but only do this if you’re willing to stay in the suburb for the foreseeable future. Breaking a lease or finding someone to replace you can be a headache for you and your landlord. Find out what lease terms the landlord prefers (i.e. 6 or 12 months) and update your application accordingly to become a more desirable tenant.

Always follow up

Don’t hesitate to follow up once you’ve sent your application in! Give the property manager a call or email if it’s been a day or two. This is a great opportunity to thank them for showing you around the home and considering your application. It’ll also leave them in no doubt about your interest and put you front-of-mind when it comes to vetting the applicants.

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Don’t forget to include references

A landlord/property manager will use your references to determine your character and suitability as a tenant. It’s always a good idea to have a previous landlord on hand to provide a glowing reference. If you happen to have a written letter accompanying your application, you’ll be one step ahead of other applicants. The same could be said about reference letters for your pets!

Above all, be honest

Would a background check on your tenancy history reveal some red flags? Get on the front foot with your application. Help them understand your situation – being upfront and trustworthy may work in your favour.

If you can explain your turnaround (say from a history of rental arrears) and the steps you’re taking towards a successful tenancy moving forward, they may be more open to renting to you.

Tip: Sending a Renter Resume to a landlord/agent when you apply for your next rental property is a fantastic way to stand out in the crowd, especially in a competitive rental market, but it’s not a guarantee that you’ll be approved. The landlord/agent will still run through the rental application process, and that may include tenant screening procedures or a credit/background check. is Australia's largest company dedicated to renters and is owned and operated by ASX-listed Limited (RNT:ASX). For over 15 years, has exclusively focused on making renters' lives easier by making it easier to find a property, secure it, move in and pay rent.