Best Tenant Screening in Atlanta – How to Find Great Tenants for Your Rental Property
Proper tenant screening is one of the most important things you can do as a landlord. Getting the right tenants in place can make a huge difference in your rental property’s success. You are looking for responsible people who will take care of the home, communicate well and pay the rent on time every month. Allowing potentially bad tenants into your house can lead to property damage, late rent and even evictions. Avoid headaches in the future by taking the time to thoroughly screen all applicants.
One of the best ways to save time is to pre-screen potential tenants before you even show them the property. When they call or email to ask for more information, get an idea of what they are looking for, why they are moving and what kind of income they earn. You want to make sure they can afford the rent and you’ll be able to determine whether your property is a good fit. If they make enough money and they give you a good reason for wanting to move, schedule a showing.
Tenant Screening Tips
It’s very important to do a background check on all the applicants who are over the age of 18. Ask prospects to fill out an application and then use the information that’s provided to verify who they are and what kind of tenants they would make. Always do a criminal background check to make sure they don’t have a history of violent felonies. Verify employment and income by asking for pay stubs and tax records or calling their employer. Take a look at their credit report and instead of making a decision based solely on their credit score, see what kind of history they have managing debt and paying their bills. You don’t want to approve anyone with a history of evictions or a number of unpaid utility and landlord bills.
Calling current and former landlords is a great way to get an idea of how a potential tenant has behaved in the past. Make sure you’re talking to an actual property manager or a property owner and not some family member or friend of the tenant. Ask about the dates of residency, whether rent was paid on time and if there were any issues with late rent or property damage.
As you’re screening tenants, make sure you’re treating each application the same way. You need to have consistent standards in place in order to comply with all state and federal fair housing laws.
If you have any questions about tenant screening, contact us at ALH|Podland, and we’d be happy to tell you more.