Stories about life in Liddonfield housing project and its impact on the Northeast Philadelphia neighborhood of Upper Holmesburg. These true stories reveal how government policy affected the lives of real people, from the project residents to area homeowners during the 5 decades of Liddonfield’s existence. Stories and articles are written by a former resident of the project.


Rosemary Reeves, Blogger, standing on Philadelphia Skyline

Jul 30, 2012

How to Get Housing With Bad Credit

by Rosemary Reeves

This article is the second in a series entitled, Poor Folks’ Secrets of Survival.  More articles on the subject will post periodically.

Try renting an apartment in a good neighborhood with a bad credit history and chances are you will have doors slammed in your face.   So, what do you do if you urgently need a place to live and your credit is bad?  Your best bet is to rent a room in the house of someone you know.  If that is not possible, you could answer an ad in the local paper, though it’s likely anyone advertising a room for rent in a good or semi-good area will still want to run a credit check.  If you fear becoming homeless because of bad credit, you might want to consider the alternative economy.

The advice I am about to give is for single people who have found themselves in such dire financial circumstances that they may otherwise end up without a roof over their head.  LANDLORDS IN DISADVANTAGED NEIGHBORHOODS ARE MUCH MORE FORGIVING WHEN IT COMES TO BAD CREDIT.  MANY DON’T EVEN RUN A CREDIT CHECK.  Remember, this is Poor Folks Secrets of Survival, not secrets to keeping a comfortable lifestyle you can no longer afford.  Housing that is available to people with bad credit is often the worst and in the least desirable parts of the   city.  Life will be hard, but as long as you have a job or some type of steady income, you don’t have to be homeless.

If your credit score is too low to get an apartment under most circumstances but is not a complete loss (such as in bankruptcy) you may still qualify for an apartment in a disadvantaged area such as Southwest Philly.  If, however, your credit is in shambles you will probably have to rent a room there instead.  In poor neighborhoods, there are lots of places that rent rooms and the landlord is not necessarily on the premises.  There may be several people renting separate rooms in a house or establishment, each with their own room key and a shared bathroom down the hall.

There are so many of these cheap rooms for rent that there is no shortage of real estate agents in disadvantaged areas who deal with rented rooms as well as apartments.  I strongly advise you go through a real estate agent.  An agent can advise you as to which is the safest place to rent a room.  To find an agent, just look in the newspaper under “rooms for rent.”  



  1. That is probably why repeat offenders goes back to jail or prison.....

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.


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