This is one of the easier places to rent an apartment. Depending on the location they may run a credit report but mostly they will be interested in whether you can pay upfront and not what you did or didn't pay in the past. If you have any black marks on your file you can mitigate the damage by providing proof of income and references from your previous landlords. Expect to pay a pet deposit along with a security deposit.
This is Arizona and this is a highly sought after area so it's expensive, to be perfectly blunt. Now if you are from one of the coasts, you probably won't bat an eye at the cost. If you are from the Midwest then you might want to bring on the smelling salts. While there are distinct neighborhoods, the reality is that there isn't much of a cost of living difference between them. This means that you could get away with paying anywhere between a whimper to a shriek for an apartment depending on the amenities of the building.
Neighborhoods here are more for real estate purposes. As far as the people are concerned, it's all pretty much the same. The actual cost of living doesn't vary much from area to area unless you are buying a home.
El Pueblo: This is a quiet neighborhood loaded with retirees. You will find it very family friendly and relaxing. You will also probably notice something else about your neighbors here: many of them work from home. This area has an unusually high concentration of people who work from their homes instead of commuting to jobs elsewhere. This cuts down on rush hour traffic drastically. $
Town Center: This is going to be your best bet for an apartment on the lower end of the expensive scale. With high vacancy rates, you might even be able to negotiate the price down a bit. This is an upper middle income area with a lot of executives and management level workers. One exception to that is where IT workers are concerned. Apparently they really hate to move because they don't, no matter how much money they make or how high they rise in their respective companies. As a result there is an unusually high concentration of IT workers in this area. $$
Sunridge: This is a wealthy neighborhood loaded with doctors and lawyers. It's also a place where just about everyone living here is married. This is a great place for a couple of family to live. $$$
Fountain View: This is the wealthiest neighborhood in Fountain Hills. These are older and more established top level executives, doctors and lawyers. Family friendly, it's a great place to raise a family as it's quiet and safe. $$$$
Fountain Hills is a suburb of Phoenix and Scottsdale, and people there both like to spend time in town and get to the bigger cities nearby. If you want to travel, have a car. Things are spread out, and you'll want to be able to depend on your own wheels if you need to get around. The city is a great place to stay put, too. In addition to the beautiful fountain, Fountain Hills is known for having lots of great festivals and fairs throughout the year -- including the Fountain Hills Great Fair, which includes both arts and a carnival. It also has a wine far and a strictly art-focused fair.