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Landlords – Follow These 4 Tips to Avoid Problem Tenants in Your Rental Property

Many landlords use first impressions of a potential tenant to determine whether or not to accept their application. Difficult tenants are acutely aware of this and are experts at putting on a good show when meeting a landlord for the first time. Dealing with problem tenants is the number one reason landlords burn out and get out of the real estate investing arena. Follow these 3 tips and you will be able to avoid problem tenants in your rental property.
Rental Application
Every prospective tenant should be required to complete a rental application. The application should include their current and two previous landlords name and contact information. If the prospect is a problem tenant, their current landlord will probably lie about them to get rid of them. For this reason you should contact their two previous landlords to get their feedback on the applicant. The application should include the employer’s name, manager’s name and phone numbers. You should contract them to verify that the employee works there and the reported income on the application is accurate.
Proof of Identity
Get a copy of the applicant’s driver’s license. This proves that the name on the application is the person submitting the application. Problem tenants are more likely to use someone else’s name on a rental application. Their best friend may have a positive reference from past landlords so problem tenants will take advantage of this by using their name on the application. By having a copy of their driver’s license you can confirm the license matches the person in front of you as well as the name on the application. If a prospect refuses to provide identification then you can refuse to rent to them.
Credit Check
Landlords should always perform a credit check on every applicant. Your rental application should have a notice stating that you are going to perform a credit check and the tenant needs to sign this request. You application should also request their Social Security number which will be required to run the credit report. Failure to pay rent usually runs hand in hand with a failure to pay other financial obligations. Checking a credit report can give you an early warning detection on whether or not an applicant could be a potential bad tenant.
References
Require all applicants to provide three references with their contact information. Contact each of these references to get their feedback on the potential tenant. References are invaluable for providing input that can be used to determine whether or not to accept an applicant. Applicants with less than stellar backgrounds will usually have this revealed when talking to references.
Avoiding problem tenants is key to survival as a landlord. Follow these 3 tips and you will reduce the number of problem tenants and improve the probability of succeeding as a landlord.…