How Lying to Your Landlord Can Cost You

3344771391_e73b2404ed_oLying on your rental application or while being a tenant may feel like it’s saving you money and potential rejection, but those lies can cost you! The “costs” may not always be monetary, but can cause a bigger burden to your future rental attempts than you’d expect.

The most common lies revolve around hiding a pet, subletting your space without letting your landlord know what’s going on, faking your job (or references), and whether you smoke or not. Getting caught in a lie obviously has consequences, but how far can these lies bring you down? The list below is classified by ascending severity:

Don’t expect to receive a friendly rental reference if you have lied to your landlord. On the flip side, you shouldn’t lie about who your landlord is when applying to rent other properties because they will catch on and see through what you’re doing.

If you have broken your rental agreement, it is very likely that fees will follow. This may include a pet deposit fee, a fine for hiding this from your landlord in the first place, or a fee to cover any damages that may have incurred.

Any unpaid fees that result from lying to your landlord and breaking your agreement have the ability to affect your credit score. For example, if you defy your landlord’s trust to the point of eviction, future unpaid rent can damage your credit score by around 50 points!

When you break the rules and lie to your landlord, it is within their rights to evict you. This is especially true when you have let a new roommate move in without letting your landlord know, not paying your bills on time (if at all), or having a pet that you aren’t allowed to have. In the pet case, if you are found out, the landlord could make you to get rid of your furry friend in order to maintain residency.

In the case of withheld money or property disputes, a small claims lawsuit may ensue. A lawsuit could also become an issue if your hidden pet inflicts damage on someone, or your secret roommate causes damage to your rental property.

Though it may add more charges to your monthly bills, it is much smarter in the long-run to find a rental place that accommodates all of your needs without having to lie. What may seem like a small white lie now, could impact your credit and future in many different ways.


How to Survive Living in Your “On-Market” Home

Annual open house event for the Wayata Community Sailing Center, Wayzata, Minnesota U.S.A.

Putting your current home on the market isn’t the most relaxing task in the world, especially if you’re still living in it. Since your home needs to be showing-ready at a moment’s notice, here are a few tips to alleviate your stress and keep a somewhat normal routine:

Pack up and organize your belongings now

Assuming everything goes to plan, you’ll be moving out soon so it’s best to pack up your belongings now. While you’re going through this process, organizing similar items and donating/dumping what you no longer use anymore can save you time and space in the future. Buyers will be turned-off by a cluttered home, so only leave out the belongings you’ll need until the potential sale of the house.

Rent a storage unit

While you’re clearing out any clutter you may have, take this time to invest in a storage unit if you have excess furniture as well. Buyers are willing to spend more for open space, so any extra furniture that may hinder that appearance should be removed. Storage units are a great place to put furniture with sentimental (but not essential) value while staging.

Secure your belongings

Since people will be looking through drawers and cabinets during showings, it’s a good idea to lock up or hide any valuables. This will include, documents, passports, jewelry, electronics, prescription medication bottles, check books, etc. Check bedside tables for any additional belongings you may have forgotten about. Your listing agent can insist that agents accompany their buyers throughout a showing. If you don’t have a safe place to lock up these items in your home, temporarily storing them in the trunk of your car can work as well.

Pamper your pets

Send your furry friends on a vacation to family or friends’ houses! If showings last an extended period of time, boarding your pets may be the best option. It’s hard to be apart from your pets, especially during a stressful time period, but you wouldn’t want a prospective buyer to let them get out! Don’t forget to hide their toys and food bowls as well.

Get ready for show time! 

Once you’ve finished preparing for a showing, leave your home as clean and as soon as possible. The goal is to have the prospective buyer see your house as their own, which will be hard if you’re still around. The nicer you make your home look, the fewer days you’ll have to deal with it being on the market!