Applying for a property

In most situations, you'll be asked by the landlord or agent to complete an application form and provide supporting documentation that shows:

  • proof of identity
  • proof of income, such as a payslip or bank statement
  • past rental records
  • personal and work references

There can be a high demand for rental properties, which means it’s likely there’ll be more than one person applying to live in the property.

Before you attend an inspection, it can help to be prepared, which can include:

  • checking the real estate agent’s website to confirm the application process
  • completing the application form in advance
  • having a copy of all the required documents ready for each adult in your household who plans to live in the property
  • submitting the application as soon as possible after inspecting the property

Rent bidding

Rent bidding is when an applicant offers the landlord or agent more rent than was advertised. This can drive the rent up, as other applicants can then be asked to match or beat the higher price.

While rent bidding is legal, landlords and agents can’t initiate it or advertise a rent amount they’re not willing to accept. 

Holding deposit

If you’ve been offered the property, the landlord or agent can ask you to pay a holding deposit to secure it for you until the lease is signed.

If you’ve paid a holding deposit and sign the lease, the deposit will go towards your rent. 

If you’ve paid a holding deposit and the landlord doesn’t sign the lease, they must give you the deposit back.

If you’ve paid a holding deposit and don’t sign the lease, the landlord or agent can keep the deposit.