According to a recent report by Fico, a total of 43.4 million people have a credit score of 599 or less. For those hard working Americans, getting an apartment with bad credit, conducting many other basic financial transactions is difficult if not impossible.
The reasons for bad credit can be many, but often include:Unpaid medical bills Delinquent taxes Too much credit card debt Large student loan balances Foreclosure Bankruptcy Job loss Illness
Regardless of why you have a poor credit score, getting an apartment in any city — from an affordable place like Bloomington, Indiana to expensive New York City — with bad credit can certainly be an issue.
Landlords regularly check the credit scores of prospective tenants, and if they have a lot of qualified applicants, those with less-than-perfect credit can quickly be eliminated. For whatever reason, if you are interested in getting an apartment with bad credit, there are some things you can do to improve your chances.
Clean Up the Credit You Do Have
If you have had a major negative event like a foreclosure, your credit score can rapidly drop by 100 points or more. This isn’t the time to ignore your issues, however, as there could be other items that are causing your score to drop even further. According to the FTC, 20 percent of Americans have credit reports that contain mistakes, and these errors can lead to lower scores. Even if you had a devastating economic event occur, check your report and dispute any errors as these could be making your score even worse.Find Apartments with Local Owners
If you are intent on getting an apartment with bad credit, look for rentals that are locally owned. If you merely apply to big complexes, you may find that there are rules in place that regular employees just cannot override. If the place you are looking for requires a credit score of 620, and yours is 615, you may be out of luck since large bureaucracies are not equipped to deal with individual situations. You can beg and plead to the local representative, but if a computer rejected your application, no one may be willing to help you.
Even if you have some credit issues try to find a suitable residence that has local ownership. In this situation, you may be able to speak directly with the owners. If you have sufficient income, and if your credit problems appear to be over, you could convince a local owner that you are a better credit risk than your score shows.
Offer to Pre-pay Rent
Even with a bigger rental complex, you could offer to prepay some of your rent to persuade the owners that they will not have a problem collecting rent from you. If you can raise the cash, offer to pay the first three months’ rent plus your security deposit up front. If you can show a steady income, offering to prepay can be another reason to persuade a landlord to say yes instead of no.Get a Co-signer
A co-signer is someone that makes themselves responsible for your rent payments if you don’t make them. If you have had a credit issue and are intent on getting an apartment with bad credit, the use of a co-signer can solve your problem. Always remember, however, that your co-signer will have to remit the payments if you cannot, and their credit can be seriously dinged if they don’t pay your rent.Assemble Good References
Not everyone in the rental business is cold-hearted and uncaring, and if you can show a prospective landlord that you are less of a credit risk, you can be successful in getting an apartment with bad credit. Work and personal references along with a good job can certainly help convince someone to rent to you.
Get Another Job
Approaching a landlord with a strong employment picture can definitely put points in your favor. Even if you have a credit score in the 500s, some great check stub history that shows you make more than enough money to cover the monthly rent can help put a landlord at ease.Set Up Auto-pay
Some landlords, especially non-corporate ones, get really antsy at the first of the month when rent is due. The last thing they want is another problem child that they have to chase for rent every month. If your credit has been dinged and your potential landlord is worried about collecting the monthly rent, offer to set up auto-payments where the rent can be automatically deducted from your bank account each month on a designated day. Once a few months have passed and your payments have been credited, you will get off the danger list.
Get a Roommate
Even if you like living by yourself, if it becomes impossible to get an apartment because your credit is a problem, consider getting a roommate with a good credit history. If you’re lucky, the application can be primarily in your roommate’s name, they can be responsible for the rent, and you can pay them. This may get you in the door, and after a while, you will have a better track record to present to other landlords.Consider Buying a Home Instead
This may seem counter-intuitive, but it isn’t in some cases. If you are a veteran, you can be approved for a VA loan that will allow you to purchase a home with a very low down payment and with a low credit score. Of course, there are always hoops to jump through, but this can be a way to solve your problem.
Also, in some states, deals like contract for deed can work. In Minnesota, for example, a surprisingly large percentage of homes are sold this way, and there are companies—blessed by the government—that specialize in these deals. Be careful of scams, however, as they are somewhat prevalent in the contract for deed industry.
The task of getting an apartment with bad credit is not a pleasant one, but you should not give up merely because you have encountered problems because of past difficulties. There are positive steps you can take that include repairing your credit, boosting your income, offering to pre-pay, setting up auto payments and more. Bad credit, although annoying, need not necessarily stop you from getting the apartment you want.
The post 9 Key Tips to Getting an Apartment with Bad Credit appeared first on The Money Pit.
LESLIE: Tony in Virginia is on the line with some creaky stairs. Tell us what’s going on.
TONY: Well, I’ve got a 55-year-old ranch house and this time, before we change the carpet, I’d like to try and get some of the creaks out of the stairs that go to the basement.
TONY: And on each step, I’ve put seven 2-inch screws where the – around where the finishing nails were. And then on the back plate, I put six screws. And some of the squeak is definitely better but they’re still very squeaky.
TOM: So, what kind of staircase is it? Is it – do you know your stairs? Is this what’s called a “box stair,” where you have a wide stringer on the side of it that goes all the way down to the basement?
TOM: And so can you get to that face? So could we screw through the stringer, into the edges of the treads to get rid of creaky stairs?
TONY: Boy, that would be tough because it’s a crawlspace. It’s possible but it would be almost heroic to get to that spot.
TOM: OK, I hear you. So here is a way to fix creaky stairs – and you’re going to carpet this, so we really don’t care how pretty this repair that I’m about to tell you to do is, because it’ll be covered by carpet.
But where the treads go into the stringers, what you can do there is on a 45-degree angle, you can pilot first some small holes. And then drive the screws at an angle through the tread, catching as much of the tread meat as you dare and then going through the back of the tread and then into the stringer itself. Because probably where the tread pulls in and out of the stringer is where you’re getting most of your squeak. I’m going to imagine that what you screwed down right now is the attachment between the tread and the risers, because those are more accessible. But we want you to actually – to secure the tread into the stringers on both sides.
So do that sort of by nailing – not nailing but screwing at a 45-degree angle, piloting first. But not with a big pilot: just enough to kind of keep the screw straight. And that will pull the tread down into the stringer and hopefully lock it in place. That plus what you’ve already done, Tony, I think is the best that you can do. You know, wood stairs have a lot of parts to them and they do move as you walk up and down. They will squeak. But if you try to secure those loose treads before you carpet them, I think it’ll make a big difference, OK?
TONY: Thank you very much.
TOM: You’re welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.
From Source Article: moneypit.com
Building a stucco wall has proven to be one of the most enduring, versatile, and weather-resistant exterior wall finishes available. With its variety of colors and textures, stucco continues to be one of the most popular wall systems.
Stucco can be applied over standard, wood frame walls in a three-coat process and over masonry and poured concrete walls in a two-coat application. Before starting your project, check local building codes for wall assembly and moisture barrier requirements in your area.
A weather-resistant stucco wall requires the use of two layers of grade D waterproof building paper over the wall sheeting including plywood, OSB, exterior gypsum board and concrete board, before the application of the base coat stucco. When attaching the waterproof building paper, vertical seams should be overlapped by 6 inches or more and horizontal seams should be overlapped by 4 inches, in shingle fashion.
The building paper should also extend 16 inches around all corners. Once the water resistant building paper is in place, all trim accessories should be installed. Trim accessories can be cut to size using metal snips. Cut edges are often very sharp, so always wear gloves when working with these materials. A weep screed is a typical excess that will be required by code.
Weep screeds are installed along the bottom edges to allow any water that has entered the wall to escape. Casing beads should be installed to neatly terminate stucco at the end of the wall. Casing beads also act as a guide to help maintain a consistent stucco thickness. Casing beads, for a three coats system, should be three quarters of an inch thick.
Casing beads for use in a two-coat system over masonry or concrete should be 1/2 inch thick. Then, galvanized expanded metal lath or 1 inch woven wire stucco netting is installed over the entire surface, overlapping by one inch on the horizontal seams and two inches on the vertical seams. Galvanized nails or staples should be used every six inches, both vertically and horizontally.
Make sure that the nails or staples penetrate the studs a minimum of one inch. The lath or stucco netting should also extend 16 inches around all corners. If the base coat stucco is applied to a clean unpainted concrete or masonry surface, waterproof building paper and metal lath are not required.
Then, control joints should be placed to create wall panels no larger than 144 square feet, keeping the panels as square as possible. Stucco will shrink as it hardens and cures. Control joints help reduce the potential for shrinkage cracking. Expansion joints are required anywhere there are existing wall expansion joints and at inside corners and changes in substrate.
Expansion joints are designed to allow for the expansion and contraction of the stucco wall panels with changes in temperature. Corner trim should be used on all outside edges, to protect the exposed stucco and to provide clean finished lines. Now that the substrate is properly prepared, it is ready for the base coat stucco application. QUIKRETE Base Coat Stucco and QUIKRETE Base Coat Stucco with Water-Stop are recommended for use in a traditional three coats system over wood sheeting and as the base for a two coat application over masonry or concrete.
These pre-blended stuccos are extremely workable for hand applied stucco applications and have the high bond strength required for a successful project. Mix the base coat stucco to a workable consistency. The proper consistency is achieved when the stucco will hang on a trowel held at a 90 degree angle. Stucco that is mixed too wet will sag. Stucco that is mixed too dry will not adhere properly to the metal lath.
One bag of 80 pound base coat stucco will cover about twenty seven square feet at three-eighths of an inch thick. Using a square trowel, held at a 45 degree angle, apply the base coat stucco using firm trowel pressure to force the stucco into the lath. Work from the bottom of the wall up and apply at a thickness of about three-eighths of an inch over the entire area.
Then, using a straight edge or darby, screed the stucco to a uniform depth of 3/8 of an inch thick. Once the stucco has become thumb print hard, scratch horizontal grooves, 1/8 of an inch deep, into the base coat, across the entire area with a raking tool. This is why this step is commonly referred to as the scratch coat. Allow the scratch coat to cure for 24 to 48 hours.
Keep the surface of the stucco damp with a fine water mist. This step will help reduce shrinkage cracking, especially in hot dry conditions. Now, mix and apply another 3/8 inch layer of base coat stucco directly to the scratch coat. This step is called the brown coat. Using a straight board or darby, screed the brown coat surface to a true even 3/8 inch thickness.
Fill any surface boards with additional base coat. The total combined base coat depth should be three-quarters of an inch thick. As soon as the stucco has lost its sheen, float the surface uniformly. Then, cure the base coat with a fine water mist for 24 to 48 hours. For two-coat applications over masonry block walls and poured concrete walls, the scratch coat step is eliminated from the process. Simply dampen the wall.
Apply the brown coat. Then, screed and float the surface to a uniform 3/8 inch thickness. Now that the base coat is complete, QUIKRETE Finish Coat Stucco can be used to provide numerous decorative color and texture options for your stucco wall. Finish Coat Stucco is available in both white and gray formulations and can be combined with more than 20 standard QUIKRETE Stucco & Mortar colors. Popular textures, such as heavy lace, light lace, dash, sand float and smooth finishes are easy to achieve with a little practice.
Working from the bottom of the wall to the top, apply a consistent 1/8 inch thick coating of Finish Coat Stucco. Then, use a whisk brush to lightly dash finish coat stucco onto the wall. Then, use a trowel to knock down and flatten the stucco. If you prefer a heavier texture, first spread the finish coat stucco in a thin application to achieve good color coverage, and then, double back with a heavier uneven application.
Once the heavy coat begins to harden knock the finish down with a trowel, creating a heavy lace finish. If a smooth finish is your preference, simply use a trowel or sponge float in a circular motion. It is important to complete the entire wall in one application. This will help limit any color inconsistencies from batch to batch. Then, keep the surface damp for several days by applying a fine water mist.
Step 1 Attach two layers of Grade D, waterproof building paper using galvanized nails or staples in a shingled fashion over the wall sheathing extending 16 inches around all corners.
TIP: vertical seams should be overlapped by 6 inches and horizontal seams should be overlapped by 4 inches.
Step 2 Install trim accessories.
TIP: trim accessories can be cut to size using metal snips but are often very sharp, so always wear gloves when working with these materials.
Step 3 Install casing beads.
TIP: casing beads for a 3 coat system should be 3/4 inch thick; casing beads for a 1 or 2 coat system should be 1/2 inch thick.
Step 4 Install a galvanized, self-furring, expanded metal lath or 1” woven wire stucco netting over the entire surface also extending 16 inches around all corners. The lath or stucco netting should over-lap by 1” on the horizontal seams and 2” on the vertical seams.
NOTE: galvanized nails or staples should be used every 6 inches both vertically and horizontally and should penetrate the studs a minimum of 1 inch.
Step 5 Place control joints to create wall panels no larger than 144 square feet. Keep the panels as square as possible.
Step 6 Place expansion joints anywhere there exists wall expansion joints.
Step 7 Install corner trim on all outside edges to protect the exposed stucco and to provide clean finished lines.
Step 8 Mix the base coat stucco to a workable consistency.
NOTE: the proper consistency is achieved when the stucco will “hang” on a trowel held at a 90 degree angle – stucco that is too wet will sag; stucco that is too dry will not adhere properly to the metal lath.
Step 9 Apply the base coat stucco using a square trowel held at a 45 degree angle. Use firm trowel pressure to force the stucco into the lath. Work from the bottom of the wall up and apply at a thickness of about 3/8 inch over the entire area.
NOTE: for one coat stucco systems, apply QUIKRETE One Coat Fiberglass Reinforced Stucco in a single application at ½ inch thick.
Step 10 Screed the stucco to a uniform depth of 3/8 inch using a straight edge.
Step 11 Scratch 1/8 inch deep horizontal grooves into the base coat with a raking tool once the stucco has become thumb-print hard.
Step 12 Cure the scratch coat for 24 to 48 hours.
Step 13 Mix and apply another 3/8 inch layer of base coat stucco directly to the scratch coat.
Step 14 Screed the surface using a straight board or darby to 3/8 inch thickness and fill any surface voids with additional base coat. The total combined basecoat depth should be 3/4 of an inch thick.
Step 15 Float the surface uniformly once the stucco has lost its sheen using a wooden trowel and cure the base coat with a fine water mist for 24-48 hours.
Step 16 Apply a 1/8 inch thick coating of QUIKRETE Finish Coat Stucco in the preferred application working from the bottom of the wall to the top. Complete the entire wall in one application.
NOTE: it is important to keep the surface damp for by applying a fine water mist over several days.
Step 17 Fill all control joints, expansion joints and gaps with a backer rod and QUIKRETE non-sag Polyurethane Sealant.
From Source Article: moneypit.com