Proper Tenant screening is a vital tool every Landlord should utilize to manage their income producing real estate properties.

Every Landlord, Apartment Manager or Property Management Company needs to understand the critical nature of placing the right tenants into the right type of property.  We cannot redline or discriminate any qualified tenant, but a reasonable businessperson with common sense can easily use an effective tenant screening policy to select the best rental and leasing applicants that are right for their property.

3 Proper Tenant Screening Tips

  1. Perform a Background Check.
    • Every prospective tenant and adult resident must fill out or be included on an rental application.  It is customary to charge a nominal application fee.
    • ALWAYS make copies of Driver Licenses and Social Security cards for each adult resident
    • Background screening tips and services was discussed in this post.
  2. Find Out About Current Living Arrangements
    • Talk to their current or past Landlord. Be sure to ask the right type of questions beyond the standard, “Do they pay their rent on time? or How long have they lived there“. Here are three good ones:
      1. Is the tenant a complainer?
      2. Is the tenant a clean tenant?
      3. Is the tenant cooperative?
    • One of the best advice a more experienced Buy & Hold Real Estate Investor gave to me was to drive by or get a sense of their current living conditions.  He said, “Do this if the property is with in my metro area and until I become a good judge of character and have a grasp of different neighborhoods“.
  3. Meet Every Adult Responsible For Paying the Rent.
    • Never let one person take the papers for another to sign.
    • Look each of them in the eye or note their facial or body reaction when you go over the house-rules to get a sense of their trust-worthiness.

Bad tenants are professional at appearing to be wonderful people” Author-Unknown

Ultimately, tenant screening may well determine the overall success or failure of your investment. If you are new to Landlording, Property Management or Income Property Ownership, take the time to learn how to practice proper tenant screening.

Minimizing the risks will always maximize your profits.

Your Comments: