Renting is a big deal in the United States, as over 44 million American households rent the roof over their heads. In terms of population statistics, the vast majority of the people a landlord will deal with will be lovely, but even if only 2% turn out to be tenants from hell, that's still 880,000 families!
Bad tenants can make renting a property out uncomfortable and unprofitable. This is why conducting a thorough tenant background check is so important. This handy article is going to tell you about the background-checking techniques professional property managers use so you can use them too.
How to Run a Tenant Background Check
First, you'll need to get written consent from the prospective tenant to start with the background check. You'll then need their full name, date of birth, and social security number. With the information and permissions in hand, decide which history-checking service you want to use and which checks you're going to include in your search.
Different types of background checks get more expensive the more information you want to be included. It may not be economical to look at all the available options, but key parts of a tenant's history can give you insight into what to expect from them.
Criminal Background Check
Roughly one in three Americans have some sort of criminality in their past, which is a scary stat on the face of it, but it's by no means a deal-breaker. If they're compliant, then it's probably a good sign even if they have a history.
If you do find criminal history, you can decide whether or not it warrants going forward with the lease. It's important to note that you shouldn't be selective about whose history you check, rather check everyone as a matter of policy. Lastly, repentant and rehabilitated offenders sometimes make the best tenants.
Credit and Insurance Records
The way a person handles finances has a much more direct effect on how they'll treat their landlord. Finding tenants with huge unpaid debts can almost guarantee that you'll have trouble collecting rent at some point. Viewing their income and employment history can also help you figure out whether they'll be able to keep up with their rent and debt repayments.
Another great staple of tenant screening is asking for references from prior landlords. Tenant screening through a professional service can tell you where the tenants rented before and if they were ever evicted.
Run a Tenant Background Check With Professional Help
Background checks are standard for many landlords and they can be very useful. To do one, get written permission from the tenant, find a background checking service, and ask for the information you want to see in the report.
Getting a tenant's credit report and rental history will tell you what to expect financially. Their criminal history is also vital to making a decision.
Running a tenant background check is smoother when done through a reliable service. Check out our tenant screening service today to get the best help in Florida!