Five Tenant Screening Mistakes You Must Avoid

As a landlord, you are always at a risk of endangering your property from getting misused. You never know who might take advantage of abusing your property for unethical purposes. Hence, having a thorough and consistent screening process in place is one of the most important steps you can take as a careful landlord. 

Consulting tenant screening services can minimize several risks, such as property damage, late payment, non-payment of dues, and tenant eviction.  Screening the applicant can substantially reduce your liabilities and the risk of legal complexities.

Let’s have a look at the top five screening mistakes that must be avoided.

No Photo ID and No Pre Qualifying Questions

Most of the landlords prefer posting an advertisement inviting innumerable applicants. It is considered to be a bad strategy. Because more applicants need more difficulty in flagging a fraudster, plus screening may also turn into a tedious task. 

It is best to stick to a concise plan, ask questions on their disposable income, their educational qualifications, professional background, and family members. And applicants with no ID proof should not be entertained at all. 

Dismissing the Consequences of an Illegitimate Tenant with No Rental Application

A landlord must ask their tenants to submit a rental application that provides consent for a background check that includes a credit report and speaking with previous landlord references. 

The tenant’s rental application creates an incentive, to tell the truth about their past conduct with previous landlords and makes the tenant swear an oath for the complete accuracy of the information provided. 

No Information on Tenant’s Income Proof and Not Knowing When a Tenant Is Qualified

Defaulters always look for a way out of trouble by not disclosing their primary source of income. A vigilant landlord will never fall for the applicant’s words but instead will ask for a genuine proof of income. Creditworthiness and Tenant-worthiness must never be overlooked, warns TruHome Property Solutions.

An efficient tenant screening service must conduct the qualification process to protect you from misleading fraudsters. If a lack of proof surfaces with the screening test, then the applicant will never be able to make its way into your property.

No Previous Landlord References and Ignoring to verify the Rental Application

Most of the landlords experience a nightmare in waking life due to improper check schedules and neglecting the verification of rental application. It’s a shocking experience to see your damaged property, missing furniture and appliances, and criminal activity conducted within your rented premises. 

Therefore, avoid such mishaps by getting the references of previous landlords about the tenant’s behavior and conduct. Verification of the rental application will help you beforehand and save you from unforeseen troubles.

Fear of Discrimination and Not Running Tenant Screening Reports

Defaulters and bad tenants seldom admit to their deeds. Landlords need to connect the dots by cross-referencing the information obtained. There is nothing wrong with protecting yourself from any harm. Hence, conducting the screening test is not a violation of the Human Rights Code. 

Always look for the time gaps in rental history, check for any contradictory notes in a rental application and credit report. 

It is always better to be right than landing oneself in a soup. Prevention from precarious situations should always be a priority.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.