Unlocking the Door to Your Dream Apartment: 3 Ways Gen Zers Can Build Credit Before Renting

Lisa Mailhot  |  January 16, 2024


Unlocking the Door to Your Dream Apartment: 3 Ways Gen Zers Can Build Credit Before Renting


The real estate market is always evolving, and as a Gen Zer with dreams of renting your own place in Orange County, it's essential to be prepared. The recent decline in rental prices is good news, but there's still fierce competition for available properties. To ensure you stand out as a competitive candidate, building your credit is a smart step to take.

Here are three effective ways to build credit before renting your dream apartment:

1. Leverage bills you routinely pay

Traditionally, household bills like utilities and internet services don't impact your credit score. However, programs like Experian Boost, StellarFi, and UltraFICO allow you to build credit based on alternative metrics such as banking activity and payments for streaming services, electric bills, and mobile phone plans. Some programs even report rental payments once you have your place, further strengthening your credit history.

Remember, building credit this way takes time and consistent good payment habits. It's not an instant fix but a valuable step toward securing your ideal rental property.

2. Become an authorized user

Another effective strategy is becoming an authorized user on someone else's credit card, particularly if they have a strong credit history. This can be a helpful option for parents looking to assist their children in building credit. Ensure the card issuer reports your payment history to the major credit bureaus, which is crucial for boosting your credit.

Coordinate with the primary cardholder to establish payment expectations and limits, and be responsible for your usage to benefit from this arrangement.


3. Consider a secured credit card

For young individuals looking to establish credit, a secured credit card is a straightforward option. It's easier to qualify for because it requires a security deposit, which sets your credit limit. Look for a secured card with no annual fee, reports to major credit bureaus, and a clear path toward an unsecured credit card with the same issuer once you've built a strong credit history.


Building a strong credit score isn't just about securing your dream apartment; it's an investment in your future. Whether it's your dream rental today or your future home tomorrow, a solid credit history will open doors to endless possibilities. As you embark on your journey to rent your place in Orange County, remember that building credit is a vital part of the process.

A strong credit history can significantly improve your chances of securing your dream apartment and favorable rental terms. And when the time comes for you to explore homeownership in Orange County, we'll be here to help you make that transition seamlessly. So, let's connect and ensure you're on the right path to your future real estate goals.


Reference: "Here are 3 ways Gen Zers can build credit before renting their own place" by Ana Teresa Solá, Published on January 15, 2024 in Personal Finance.

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