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Guide To Finding Apartments That Accept Felons

Written by: Jody Adams
Last updated: January 31, 2024

Finding an apartment to rent can be a difficult and stressful process, especially if you are a felon. Many landlords are hesitant to rent to felons because of the risk of property damage or criminal activity. However, there are still options for felons looking for a place to call home.

In this blog post, we’ll provide a guide to finding apartments that accept felons. 

How To Find Apartments That Accept Felons

Criminal records stay with people for a long time, and many landlords eliminate felons with these types of backgrounds from their options. However, there are online platforms that prospective tenants can use to find a suitable apartment for their needs.

If you are wondering what websites you can use for apartment hunting, here are the top options:


Zillow is a popular website used as a free service for finding rental properties. It is an American tech real-estate marketplace that has been operating since 2006.

Many people love using Zillow because it provides access to 110 million homes across the United States. However, most properties use screening and background checking before approving a tenant.

If you want to improve your chances of approval, you should filter properties and landlords and select those who allow renting without a background check. You may also utilize its other features, like looking at aerial views, neighborhood details, square footage, and value estimates.


Using Craigslist to find apartments that will accept felons is a great way to start your search. It has listings for apartments in various cities and states, and many are willing to accept felons as tenants.

Craigslist makes apartment hunting easier with its features of contacting the landlord directly to discuss needs without going through an agent.

To find apartments that accept felons, you can search for specific keywords such as “felon friendly” or “felon welcome.” You can also look for listings that state that they accept felons or don’t discriminate based on criminal history.


Bungalow is a website that offers shared accommodations, which can be more accessible than finding apartments on your own.

Initially, the thought of being with a stranger can be scary, but sharing a room with someone can be an excellent place to start. Not only will having a roommate help you blend in better with society, but life may also be easier when you have someone to share life with.

To open an account in Bungalow, you must be ready to provide your information, including a credit score of about 600.


Another great option for felony-friendly apartments is Zumper. Its easy-to-use interface offers a filter where you can find the best apartments easily, and you may also access second-chance listings to find the most suitable apartment choice. offers a network that allows you to access millions of listings. Its online rental marketplace is also linked to, and several other websites, making your reach even broader. With their tools and resources, felons can find the best apartments to entertain their rental application.

Eligibility Of A Felon For Federal Housing/Section 8

Section 8 is a housing voucher program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). It provides rental assistance to low-income individuals, families, and elderly or disabled persons. The program is funded by the federal government, and each state has its own rules and regulations regarding eligibility.

So, what about felons? Are they eligible for Section 8? The answer is yes, but there are certain criteria that must be met. Generally speaking, a felon must meet the same requirements as any other applicant. This includes having an income that falls within the HUD’s guidelines and not having any outstanding debts with the agency.

In addition, the HUD has established certain criteria that must be met by felons specifically. These criteria include:

  • The felony must not have been related to the manufacture or sale of illegal drugs
  • The felony must have been committed more than five years prior to the application
  • The applicant must have complied with all court orders and/or parole requirements
  • The applicant must have a history of good rental behavior

In addition to these criteria, each state may have its own set of rules and regulations regarding the eligibility of felons for Section 8. It is important to check with your local HUD office to determine the exact requirements in your area.

3 Ways A Felon Could Increase His Chances Of Getting An Apartment

Finding an apartment can be a daunting task for anyone, especially felons. There are, however, a few steps they can take to increase their chances of finding an apartment. 

Start Looking For A Job

Having a steady job is one of the most important things you can do to improve your chances of getting an apartment. Not only does it show that you have the means to pay rent, but it also shows that you are responsible and capable of managing your finances. Having a job can also help you build a good rental history and even provide references for potential landlords.

Volunteer In Your Free Time

Not only does volunteering provide an opportunity to give back to the community and make a positive impact, but it can also be used to build a good reputation and demonstrate responsibility.

Volunteering can be an especially effective strategy for getting an apartment if the felon volunteers in a field related to their desired job. 

Try To Get Referred

Many landlords will be more willing to accept a tenant if they have a referral from someone they trust. For example, if a felon has a friend or family member who can speak on their behalf, this may be enough to convince a landlord that they are trustworthy and reliable. 

Look For Apartments That Accept Felons Today

Finding felon-friendly apartments can be quite challenging, but it's not impossible. You can utilize various tools and resources and do thorough research for more chances of success.

If you want to find housing solutions for felons, check out more resources at Gov Relations today. You can start by reading our guide to housing assistance programs for low-income felons.

Jody Adams
Jody Adams is an accomplished editor-in-chief with a deep understanding of social care and government benefits issues. With a background in journalism and a master's degree in Public Policy, Jody has spent her career shaping the narrative around social policies and their impact on society. She has worked with renowned publications, effectively bridging the gap between complex policy analysis and public understanding. Jody's editorial expertise ensures that vital information on social care and government benefits reaches a broad audience, empowering individuals to make informed decisions.
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