How to Rent a Home While on Disability


Renting a home is a stress-inducing process. Browsing listings, viewing homes and paying for and submitting applications is especially difficult for the disabled. If you face having to rent a new home during your period of disability, you’ll need to go to some extra lengths before you begin your home search and be vigilant during your search in order to overcome the special challenges your situation presents. Don't despair, however. Some landlords consider disabled tenants with fixed incomes to be less risky than nondisabled tenants who might be subject to job loss or a decrease in pay.

Give your current landlord the required amount of notice, as per your lease, that you’ll not renew your current lease.

Interview local real state agents to find one who can help you find an accessible home and assist you in the application process.

List the accommodations you’ll need. The list will help your real estate agent find homes that are suitable for you.

Determine your budget.

Gather documentation of your household income, including your most recent Social Security disability benefit statement or the statement from your private disability insurer; statements of other benefits you receive, like energy assistance or food stamps; and proof of other household income, such as pay stubs; a W-2; or “Schedule C, Profit or Loss from a Business” tax form from the most recent tax year.

Obtain bank statements or canceled checks showing your rental payment history for the past year.

Request a letter of referral from your current landlord.

Print copies of your bank and investment statements to include with your rental application as evidence of your ability to pay the rent on your fixed income.

Put aside enough money to cover your application fees, the costs of accommodations you’ll need to make to your home, and your move-in money: first and last months’ rent plus a security deposit equal to one month’s rent.

View homes with your real estate agent. Submit a rental application for the one you would like to rent.

Tour the home before you sign the lease in order to make sure the condition hasn’t changed and to note the condition of surfaces that might be affected by any accommodations you install, like shower bars.

Tips & Warnings

  • In most cases, you'll be responsible for the cost of adapting your rental home to accommodate your disability and for returning your home to its original condition before you leave.
  • An affordable rent amount is 25 to 30 percent of your gross monthly income. You may be able to pay more if you have no debt and receive other assistance; alternately, you may not be able to afford as much if you have unusually high bills.
  • If mobility issues make it difficult for you to view homes, ask a friend or family member to attend showings with your agent on your behalf. This person and your agent can take careful notes and even snap digital photos for you to view afterward. Once you've narrowed the choices to just one or two, attend a showing yourself in order to make the final decision.

Related Searches

Promoted By Zergnet


You May Also Like

Related Searches

Check It Out

4 Credit Myths That Are Absolutely False

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!