The last thing any landlord wants to face is being stuck with a problematic tenant. Thankfully, running a background check can help to weed out the good from the bad. Here are some important factors to keep in mind when running a tenant background check.
Determine Who Your Ideal Tenant Is
Before starting a background check, it’s helpful to know who your ideal tenant is. This will make the process easier, faster and increase your chances of finding a suitable tenant once you know what you are looking for. Just make sure to be realistic and flexible with your expectations.
Outline Your Apartment Listing in Detail
Taking time to thoroughly list out and explain the details of your apartment listing will save you much more time in the long run. When creating your listing, include details about what it offers, whether it has been recently updated, where it’s located, what type of other tenants are currently living in the complex, and so on. This can serve as an initial prescreen to attract the type of tenants you’re looking for.
Know Which Questions to Ask
Weeding out good tenants from potential nightmarish ones is essential to make your rental process go smoothly, and you can avoid problems. The most factor to consider when running a tenant background check is to know which questions to ask. Having a list ready will help you narrow down the options before bringing people to view your apartment. Here are some common ones to include:
- When are you available to move in?
- Do you have references from previous landlords?
- What do you do for a living?
- Do you own any pets?
- Will you be living with anyone else?
- Can I get a credit report?
Check their Online Footprint
You can learn a lot about tenants by searching online. Take a look on LinkedIn, Google, Facebook and Instagram. These may help you get a clearer picture of who they are. You can also verify their employment and work history, and get a general sense of whether they’re the type of tenant you’re looking for.
Verify Employer’s Information
Make sure the employer info they provided is in fact, their employer and not a distant family member or friend. It can be easy enough to have someone substitute or play the part. Search online and call to confirm the information they provided you with.
Perform a Credit Check
Even if the tenant has their report ready for you, perform a separate credit check so you can view and verify the data as well. One of the most important factors when choosing a tenant is having someone you know can and will be able to pay rent consistently each month. There are many simple ways to run a credit check online.
Pay Attention to Details During Viewing
Background checks can reveal a good amount of info. But you can also learn a lot about them when you meet them in person to view the apartment. Use this time to pay attention to them and learn more about who they are, such as if they arrived on time, do they appear well put together, hygienic, did they comment on the cleanliness of the place or ask about smoking policies and so forth.
If you own rental properties but don’t want to deal with all the work, let us take it over for you. Contact Rent in Ottawa today to learn how to get started so you can enjoy the benefits of additional income each month without the hassle of screening and managing tenants.