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First Gen Z Member of Congress Denied D.C. Apartment Due to Bad Credit

Maxwell Alejandro Frost
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Maxwell Alejandro Frost, the first Gen Z member of congress, recently opened up on Twitter about how he was denied a D.C. apartment due to bad credit.

Maxwell Alejandro Frost, the first Gen Z member to be elected to congress, recently opened up about how he was denied an apartment in Washington D.C. due to bad credit.

"Just applied to an apartment in DC where I told the guy that my credit was really bad. He said I’d be fine," Frost Tweeted Thursday. "Got denied, lost the apartment, and the application fee. This ain’t meant for people who don’t already have money."

Frost, who recently won his election to the House of Representatives in Florida's tenth district, added that his bad credit was due to him quitting his job in order to run a full-time campaign. Though he drove Uber at the time, it did not pay enough.

"For those asking, I have bad credit cause I ran up a lot of debt running for Congress for a year and a half. Didn’t make enough money from Uber itself to pay for my living," Frost shared.

Casey Burgat, legislative affairs program director at George Washington University, told NPR that Frost's Tweets shed light on a problem that goes beyond credit scores.

"[Frost] just stating this publicly is kind of saying the quiet part out loud and shining a light on a reality that it's incredibly expensive to live in D.C., to be young in D.C., and then maintain it. Even for members of Congress," she said. "It makes Congress exactly what it's been for so long: A disproportionately wealthy, disproportionately white institution.

Frost maintained that he could not have won his race without intense campaigning, which a separate job would not allow.

"It isn’t magic that we won our very difficult race. For that primary, I quit my full time job cause I knew that to win at 25 yrs old, I’d need to be a full time candidate," he added. "7 days a week, 10-12 hours a day. It’s not sustainable or right but it’s what we had to do."

Burgat said that the problems faced by Maxwell serve as roadblocks to young POC interested in politics, often preventing them from running for office.

"This is a main contributor for why people can't afford to run for office. It's not seen as a viable path," she explained. "And though we're getting a little bit better at our diversity, we still have a long way to go and the cost of it is not getting cheaper."

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has also been open with the housing struggles she experienced before being sworn into office. When she was elected in 2018, she told The New York Times: "I have three months without a salary before I'm a member of Congress. So, how do I get an apartment? Those little things are very real."

In his thread, Frost added that many people do not have the same privilege he does, with an annual salary beginning next year.

"I also recognize that I’m speaking from a point of privilege cause in 2 years time, my credit will be okay because of my new salary that starts next year. We have to do better for the whole country."

Who is the first Gen Z member of Congress?

Maxwell Alejandro Frost of Florida's tenth district.

What is the average rent in D.C.?

$2,600 according to rental company Zillow.

What is a good credit score?

“Very good” FICO scores range from 740 to 799; a “good” score ranges from 670 to 739; and 580–669 is considered “fair.” Any score below 580 is considered poor.

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