Knowing and screening your tenant are important to ensure you do not encounter problems when renting your property. At the onset, problems regarding tenants may not manifest, which is why you must be thorough in your screening process. First impressions are not enough to judge whether someone can be a fit tenant for your property. Are you in dire need of immediately renting out your property? Still, you should take some time to get to know your potential tenants’ background before handing them the key.
Effective Ways to Screen Your Potential Tenants
Whether it be the first time you are renting out your property, or you have been in this business for years, it pays to have a screening process and exercise diligence. Hopefully, the following tips can help make it easier for you.
- Have a rental application ready for your tenant.
A rental application will get important information like their previous and current employers, their former landlords, personal information, contact information, financial information, present income and their personal references. You can make your own rental application, or get a sample rental application online.
- Perform a background check.
Get the name and the birth date of your tenant and verify his or her identity by asking for a valid I.D. Use the information to search if they have criminal records, and see if your tenant had serious or minor offenses in the past. If you want to be more thorough, you can hire the services of an investigation company.
- Check the tenant’s rental history.
Try to contact the last landlord of your tenant and ask him or her whether the tenant was able to pay rent on time consistently. You can also ask what kind of person the tenant is, and whether he or she is respectful and courteous. Find out the reason for the tenant’s move, and whether he or she followed the rules or caused any damage to the property.
- Get in touch with the tenant’s employers.
To know if your tenant can keep up with payments, you must check if they have a stable and reliable income. Check with your tenant’s employer whether he or she is really employed in their company, and try to learn more about how your tenant is doing at work.
- Check your tenant’s credit history.
Check your tenant’s credit history for late payments or bankruptcy and check whether he/she still has unpaid debts.
- Meet and interview the tenant.
Meeting your tenant face to face can help you evaluate them better. By talking to your tenant personally, you can know more about his/her lifestyle and see whether he/she matches criteria for a good tenant. However, be wary that you cannot discriminate based on religion, sex, race, religion and disability.
Exercising diligence by screening your tenants properly is reasonable way to avoid hassles in the future. After all, you have the right to your property and to exclude others based on meritorious grounds.
The Lofts of Columbia offers upscale apartments in Columbia, MO.