When it comes to placing new tenants in your rental property, one of the most important components of the process is tenant screening. While you may be tempted to simply go with your instinct and choose the first person who seems like the right fit to you, you should always leave tenant screening to the pros.
The good news is that leaving the screening process to the pros doesn’t mean you need to hire an expensive property management company. With the advent of technology geared towards independent landlords, you can access professional tenant screening at no cost to you. The following are the reasons you should leave tenant screening to the pros and utilize a professional tenant screening tool when finding your next renter.
1: Evictions Are A Warning Flag
Many landlords list “no prior evictions” as one component of their screening criteria. By running a professional screening report, you can access an applicant’s eviction history. This insight will be invaluable as it allows you to see how responsible a tenant has been in the past. If someone has been evicted before, especially recently, it is a good indicator they may not be responsible. When you pair an eviction history with a credit report and criminal background report, you can gain a bigger picture of who your applicant is and how responsible they have been historically. Evictions are costly and a massive headache. Avoid the hassle by avoiding applicants with a past record of evictions.
2: References Aren’t Always Accurate
While you may be inclined to trust your gut paired with references from a tenant, keep in mind that references aren’t always accurate. An applicant is rarely going to provide you with a reference who would speak ill of them. They will cherry pick the best references and might even have friends or family pose as a previous landlord or employer. Asking for reputable references is important. Opt for references you can validate, such as a boss with a work phone number you can verify. However, never rely on references alone as enough for tenant screening. Pairing quality references with a thorough and professional screening report will go a long way in helping you choose a qualified and responsible tenant.
3: Credit Reports Provide Insight
Beyond just eviction reports and criminal history, a professional screening report should include a credit score and detailed credit history. This information will allow you to gauge how an applicant has handled their funds in the past. Determine a criteria for credit scores before you begin screening tenants and use this as a guide for accepting or rejecting applicants. Beyond just the credit score number, a professional screening report will provide you with detailed information about a person’s credit history. This will help you determine what caused damage to their credit score as well as the time frame. It will also let you know how much outstanding debt they still have and what type of payments they are making every month. If you are ready to turn over your tenant screening process to the pros, check out the tenant screening tool found here. By having interested parties apply through TurboTenant, you can access a full screening report including credit, criminal, and eviction history.
TurboTenant is revolutionizing the rental process by providing savvy landlords with cutting-edge technology that’s intuitive, powerful, fast and free. Through one-click online rental marketing, fully integrated tenant screening, and customizable property websites, TurboTenant is changing the way landlords manage property. Sign up for TurboTenant today and see how our free landlord software will simplify your life.
If you liked this article, subscribe to Rentometer's email newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in rental housing.