Whether it’s your first apartment or your tenth, acing an apartment interview is an important step in renting any apartment.

Sure, you’ve already submitted an application and supporting paperwork, but there are certain qualifications that landlords or property management companies use to evaluate prospective residents. First and foremost, they want to know that you will abide by the terms of the lease, including paying rent on time and taking care of the home.

Plus, an apartment interview is a great way for landlords to get to know their prospective residents. If the landlord is unsure whether your application will be approved, information provided in an apartment interview could tip the scales in your favor.

As you prepare for your interview, keep in mind that there are certain things a landlord or property manager can ask you about, and other things they cannot. The Fair Housing Act was created to prevent discrimination and ensure all applicants are treated equally. Here, we’ll discuss the topics you can expect to surface in an apartment interview and those that are off the table.

What Questions are Asked in an Apartment Interview?

  • Employment and income: Although you have probably already provided proof of income earlier in the process, the property manager might want to verify your employment status during the apartment interview. He or she might also want to ensure that you can pay any upfront costs, such as the first month’s rent or a security deposit
  • Number of tenants: You may have answered this question during the application process, but it is reasonable for a landlord or apartment manager to confirm how many people will be living in the unit and if you’ll have any roommates.
  • Permission to run a credit or background check: Landlords and property managers must get your permission before running a credit or background check. Sometimes there is language asking for this permission in the application. If not, they might ask for it during the apartment interview.
  • Prior evictions: Rental history is important to landlords and property managers, so if you have been evicted from a rental anytime in the past seven years, it is a good idea to disclose that information. This is also your chance to explain what happened and provide assurances that it won’t occur again.

What Can’t Be Asked in an Apartment Interview

Under the Fair Housing Act, landlords cannot ask prospective renters any questions related to age, disabilities, familial status, gender, race, religion, or national origin.

It’s also important to know that anything a landlord or property manager asks of one prospective renter—such as proof of income and permission to run background or credit checks—must be asked of all applicants. Landlords and property managers must use the same screening standards for every applicant.

Rent Stress-Free at Southern Management

At Southern Management, our residents come first. Our all-star team of property managers pride themselves on being empathetic to and flexible with applicants, and we’re willing to go the extra mile to accommodate your needs and situation. Our priority is helping people find their perfect home.

If you’re interested in beginning your stress-free rental journey, browse our 75 apartment communities online, then contact us to learn more about our resident application and interview processes. We look forward to meeting you!