Finding A Non-Crappy Place To Live When You Have Poor Credit

D. hates her current apartment, and is looking for a new place to live. The catch? She works as a temp, and has had some credit problems. She has a steady work history, and also a decade-long history of on-time rent payments to the management company she currently rents from. She wonders: what advice does the Consumerist Hive Mind have for her as she looks for a new home?

I’m about to begin a search for a new apartment and my credit is crap and I’m a temp. Have you guys got any advice on what I can do to find a place? I’m looking to move out at the end of August.

Things I do have going for me: I’ve been in my current apartment for 10 years and I’ve never been late on rent. I worked for the management company and that helped. I’ve also worked pretty steadily for the past few years, so I could bring in my tax forms.

Things not going in my favor: I built up a lot of debt and ended up going to a lawyer to help me work things out. I didn’t declare bankruptcy, but one creditor did sue me and there’s an outstanding judgment. I’m a temp. I have no idea if I’ll be working when I move out.

Why am I looking at moving? Well, I hate my apartment. After 10 years, the management company hasn’t ever offered to paint — they looked at my apartment to see if it would need paint after I leave, though. The building has also changed from one with people of all different ages to one that’s dominated by college students and young 20-somethings. I’m in my early 40’s and feel like I’m living on fraternity row. In fact, that’s how the whole neighborhood is. It’s just time for a change. To top things off, because I work for the management company (one day a week), I’m on a month-to-month lease.

Any advice you could give me would be helpful. I live in Chicago and want to stay there.

I figure if people who’ve lost homes due to foreclosure can find places to live, so can I.

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