Rentals in New York City are getting more and more expensive these days and using a guarantor is a common solution if you don’t earn enough to qualify for an apartment to yourself. Guarantors also have strict requirements, so make sure you ask someone who is financially solid.

That’s because hosts want to see that your guarantor has solid credit, earns at least 80 times your monthly rent, and preferably lives in the three-state area.

If your guarantor doesn’t get approved, it’s usually because they didn’t understand expectations, says Molly Franklin, a real estate agent at Corcoran. It happens occasionally, though it’s a scenario that could be easily avoided by brushing up on the requirements, she says.

[Editor’s Note: Realty Bites tackles your NYC rental questions. Have a query for our experts? Drop us an email. We respect all requests for anonymity.]

Take, for example, the papers that a guarantor must provide. Franklin says she once had a client with wealthy parents who wanted to act as guarantor but wouldn’t fully disclose their financial information. Instead, they tried to show a bank statement with no name so they couldn’t be approved, she says.

Another reason some guarantors are rejected is if they live outside the Tri-State area. Some states like Florida and Texas have laws that make it harder to sue a guarantor for rent delinquent. Some buildings do not approve guarantors living in these states.

Do you have to apply for the apartment again with another guarantor? The city’s rental market is very now competitive. So a landlord will likely move on to the next most qualified applicant, Franklin says.

If you need a guarantor to secure an apartment, using a real estate agent who knows the building well and understands what the landlord is looking for when it comes to a guarantor can make the process easier, says Adjina Dekidjiev, a real estate agent at Warburg Real Estate. Dekidjiev says she doesn’t often see guarantors turned down because she carefully explains the requirements in advance.

If you do lose the apartment, you might want to consider apartments in less competitive neighborhoods, Dekidjiev says. You will also find lower rent in these neighborhoods, so it might be easier to qualify.

Searching for apartments that have not been renovated or have been on the market for a long time due to some other problem is another way to find something affordable.

Another solution is to co-signer rather than guarantor, that is someone who will sign the lease with you and is directly responsible for the rent payments.

Alternatively, if you do not have a qualified personal guarantor, you can use an institutional guarantor such as: insured (a Brick sponsor). Insurent will pre-qualify you in 30 minutes and provide the warranty in 24 hours or less, said Jeffrey Geller, founder and chief operating officer of the lease warranty company. To qualify, you must have a minimum annual income of 27.5 times monthly rent or cash assets or public securities of at least 50 times monthly rent, plus fair to good credit.

Keep in mind that not all buildings accept institutional guarantors and some only certain companies.