Resident FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions


These are some of our most frequently asked questions. If your question is not addressed here, please feel free to call our office at 323-473-9399 during business hours from 9:00AM – 5:00PM Monday-Friday or email

How long can you hold a property before I move in?

We can hold the property for up to 21 days. The only way to hold a rental home is to have an approved application and submit the required security deposit in the form of a Cashier’s check.

Is the security deposit refundable?

The Resident Security Deposit is fully refundable minus any charges for property damage, unpaid rent, unpaid late fees, etc.

You have a property I want to rent. What are your rental criteria and how do I apply?
Click here for Online Application

Click here for Rental Criteria

We can also provide you with a link via email to apply and pay your required (non-refundable) application fee. Please contact or call 323-205-7399.

I have credit issues. Can I still qualify as a renter?
Credit is one of the factors for application approval. Our rental criteria require a credit score of at least 650. The effect of your poor credit history on your application will affect our AI scoring system. Other factors such as income and eviction history will be taken into consideration as well.
What if I have no Credit?
No credit is better than bad credit but in order to meet our rental criteria, you might need to get a co-signer who resides in California or pay a higher security deposit. Other factors such as income will be taken into consideration as well.
How long does the application take to process?

The application usually takes 24-48 hours and you will be notified immediately if you are accepted or denied. Application delays occur when it takes longer to get employment and rental verification. To make the process faster, submit at least 3-6 months of recent proof of income and updated contact information of employers and landlords.

Do I have to submit separate applications if I’m interested in more than one property?

No, you only need to submit 1 application and pay the application fee but you still need to meet the income requirement for each property to be approved. For income, we require at least 3x the rent and the rent amount for each property can vary. If the application is approved, it is valid for 30 days.

I am an international student. How do I apply?
We accept all applications. You just need to meet our income, criminal history, and other rental criteria.
Is it possible to apply for a property that I haven't viewed?
We advise all applicants to see the property in person or have a family member/friend inspect the property. We do not accept sight-unseen applications.
What happens to my application fee if I change my mind and don't want the home I applied for?

Once the application is processed, we can no longer refund the application fee.

What other documents can I submit as a Business Owner/Self-employed?
By law, management is not allowed to require tax returns. But you can always provide it as proof of income if you choose to do so. We can also use your P/L statement to match your bank statements.
What are the next steps once my application is approved?
We will send the lease agreement within 24 hours for your signatures. You have 48 hours to sign the lease agreement and another 48 hours to drop off the 2 cashier’s checks payable to “Earnest Homes”. One for the security deposit and one for the 1st month’s rent.
I want to get a pet. What do I do?
You must submit your pet application through and pay your required pet application fee. All pets must be approved in writing by the Landlord or Agent of the Landlord. We do not charge pet rent or pet application fees for emotional support pets, service animals, and assistance animals.
When is rent due and how long is the grace period?

Rent is always due on the 1st of the month. Tenants have a 3-5 day grace period depending on your lease agreement, regardless of the holidays.

Can I use my security deposit for my last month’s rent?

Unfortunately, the security deposits are separated from the rent payments. If you do not pay, you will be subjected to a late fee that can have an effect on your credit scores. Your security deposit will be returned to you within 21 days after you move out.

How do I request a repair?
The most efficient way is to go to your tenant portal and submit a work order online. You can also call our office at 323-473-9399 from 9:00 AM-5:00 PM Monday – Friday and 323-977-2008 for after-hours emergencies.
What is considered an emergency?
The definition of a maintenance emergency is something that can cause serious damage to the property or your safety and cannot wait till the next business day. Our call center will determine if you have a true emergency and contact an emergency vendor. Examples include no electricity, gas leaks, fire, carbon monoxide presence, and major water leaks.
I lost my keys and got locked out, what do I do?
Unfortunately, you will have to call a locksmith at your own expense. The management does not provide the additional key to the tenant as we only have 1 set.
What is Pass-through or SCEP fee?
Systematic Code Enforcement Fees (SCEP) is a fee that property owners and tenants of rent-controlled properties pay. The fee covers building inspections by Housing + Community Investment Department (HCIDLA) to ensure each unit meets city codes.
Can the management provide a vendor with access to my property when I am not home?
The management cannot provide access to the vendor due to time constraints and liability reasons with the exception of emergencies. We recommend that the tenant is home to provide access when scheduling the repair of a work order. If you wish, the tenant can coordinate access with the vendor directly.
How do I pay rent?
Residents can use ACH for free or mail in a personal check or cashier’s check at the address below.

Earnest Homes
15303 Ventura Blvd #900
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

Where can I get a copy of my lease agreement?
In your Resident portal, you can download a copy of the documentation. Please contact your account manager if you don’t see a copy of your lease.
Who are the water company, electrical provider, and gas provider in my area?
All utilities need to be turned on before move-in. Earnest Homes has partnered with Citizen Home Solutions; a free utility concierge company that can help you turn on all utilities for free. 

If CHS has not contacted you already, please submit your information at the link below:

You can also locate the utility providers on your own at the link below:

Why do I need renters Insurance?

Per your lease agreement, it is required that you maintain renters insurance. Renters insurance covers your personal belongings should they get damaged due to accidental damage to the house. For example, an electrical surge damages your electronic device or you have to relocate due to fire, flood, etc. These damages shall not fall on the landlord or management. It shall be claimed against renters insurance. Please make sure that your renter’s insurance policy fits your personal needs. Earnest Homes also has a master policy for your convenience, please contact us to enroll.

How do I renew/not renew my lease?
Residents are notified 90 days before their lease expires to let them know that the lease is ending soon. Our management team will work with you and try to secure a new lease 30 days prior to the lease expiring via electronic signatures. If you do not wish to renew the lease, our staff will schedule a pre-move out inspection with you 2 weeks prior to your move-out date.
Can I get a roommate?

The new occupant will need to fill out an application and submit proof of income. Once approved by the owner, they will be added to the lease. Please note that the same terms and conditions still apply.