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Zillow recently announced a new program to help renters who may not have ideal credit scores, a solid income or housing references get the start they need.

The program, titled Community Pillars, was launched July 15 in effort to connect those renters with landlords who are eager to help them get into a quality housing situation.

When landlords and property managers opt to take part in the Community Pillars program, the Community Pillar badge appears on their Zillow profile. This signifies to renters that the landlord is willing to modify their standard tenant screening process.

Although the renter must have current means to pay monthly rent, any past financial troubles will be overlooked.

“Even if a renter has perfect credit and the necessary funds to secure a rental, there are no guarantees. It’s that much more challenging for those renters who may be facing a potential housing barrier,” said Rebekah Bastian, Zillow’s vice president of product.

“By adding a Community Pillar badge to property manager and landlord profiles, it will be much easier for these renters to find and connect with rental professionals who may have a unit that fits their needs.”

Courtesy of Zillow

Courtesy of Zillow

In addition to the launching of the Community Pillars program, Zillow added the ability for property managers and landlords to have profiles in the site’s directory. This profile enables renters to “get to know” them before reaching out.

Zillow is increasing awareness of the Community Pillars program by reaching out to housing organizations and property managers who may be interested in helping renters secure housing. Renters will then be able to search specifically for landlords who are willing to accommodate their financial situation.

“The rental landscape in the U.S. has become more competitive than ever — people are staying renters longer, so vacancy rates are hitting historic lows, and renting is becoming increasingly expensive, making it more difficult for people to afford,” Bastian said.

The landlord profiles are a no-cost solution for property managers to showcase their listings to the community. By simply clicking on the option to add the badge to their profile, landlord profiles will have the Community Pillar badge.

Email Kimberly Manning.

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