How to Find an Apartment with a Criminal Record

The cost of carrying a criminal record goes beyond the courtroom doors and can enter other areas of your day-to-day life. Things as simple as renting an apartment or finding a roommate can become difficult now that background checks make information readily available. To prevent doors from closing on you, it’s important to learn and exercise the options available to open up future doors of opportunity. 

If you’re trying to find an apartment and struggling to secure it because of a past criminal record, there are several steps you can take to make the process less burdensome. Lifeback Legal is a division of the Law Firm of Shea M. Randall, a trusted California Law Firm. We specialize in helping individuals get their life back with California criminal record expungements and federal licensing services and can help you minimize the damage of your criminal record and help you obtain affordable housing.

Clear Your Criminal Record. Each state offers different options to clear a criminal record through expungement, vacates, record sealings, certificates of rehabilitation, and more. To qualify, you’ll want to speak with an attorney licensed in the state where your case occurred.

Clearing your record can mean the ability to deny the existence of the case or make the case inaccessible on background checks, further broadening your chances at securing gainful housing.

Search for Privately Owned Housing. Generally speaking, if you are working directly with a landlord who owns the property that is being rented out, you may have a greater chance at connecting with the landlord and going through a less rigorous screening or background check process. For example, seeking out owners who are renting or leasing out their own homes, apartments, or guest houses, would be a good start. The less corporate involvement, the less likely you’ll be required to perform a thorough background check, further increasing the likelihood your housing application is accepted by the private entity.

You may also want to consider reaching out to family and friends. Local opportunities to rent from loved ones may result in leniency for a background check while you get back on your feet. 

Find out about State-Funded Housing in Your Area. Under most state legislatures, the ability to apply for state-funded housing should be available. Sometimes, state-funded housing will require that you clear your criminal record first before applying. Therefore, you’ll want to consider clearing your criminal record as your primary goal before sending out an application. 

By taking these steps into consideration before submitting your housing application, you’ll be increasing the likelihood of securing housing with a criminal record. Feel welcome to reach out to our law firm to discuss what criminal record clearance options may be available to you so that you can get the housing you deserve.

Our office can be reached by filing out the contact form below or by calling our office at (888) 751-5329

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