Have you heard that the background check services industry is worth $4.3 billion?
Landlords need to conduct a thorough background check on potential tenants. This helps them choose responsible and reliable renters.
Are you new to the screening process? Read on for a breakdown of how to run a background check for apartment rentals.
Tenant Screening Importance
Tenant screening is a vital process. It enables you to learn more about your prospective tenants before finalizing any agreements.
By running a background check, you can assess their reliability and trustworthiness. This reduces the risk of problems in the future.
Rental History Verification
The first step is verifying the applicant's rental history. Request references from their previous landlords to gain insights into their rental behavior. Inquire about the following:
- Their payment history
- Whether they adhered to the lease terms
- If they caused any property damage
Eviction History Check
To protect your property and other tenants, it's essential to check the applicant's eviction history. You can contact local courts or use online databases to search for any past eviction records. A history of evictions may indicate potential issues with paying rent or adhering to lease agreements.
Credit Check Evaluation
Conducting a credit check is crucial to assess the applicant's financial responsibility. Obtain their written consent before obtaining their credit report. Look for the following:
- Their credit score
- Outstanding debts
- Any late payments
Criminal Background Check
A criminal background check helps ensure the safety and security of your property and other residents. Check for any criminal records in local and federal databases. Focus on relevant offenses that could pose a risk to the property or the neighborhood.
Compliance With Fair Housing Laws
It's essential to comply with all federal, state, and local fair housing laws. Treat all applicants equally. Avoid any discriminatory practices based on the following:
- National origin
Use a Tenant Screening Service
To simplify the background check process, consider using a reputable tenant screening service. These services provide comprehensive reports that include the following:
- Rental history
- Credit scores
- Eviction records
- Criminal background checks
Set Clear Criteria
Before conducting the background check, establish clear criteria for what you consider an acceptable tenant. Define the following:
- Minimum credit score
- Income requirements
- Rental history standards
Applying consistent criteria will help you make fair decisions.
Communicate With Applicants
Keep the applicants informed about the background check process. Open communication encourages serious and qualified applicants to complete the process.
Make Informed Rental Decisions
Have you collected all the relevant information from the background check? Analyze the data to make an informed rental decision. Weigh the pros and cons of each applicant based on the following:
- Their rental history
- Eviction and criminal records
- Overall suitability as tenants
You Need to Run a Background Check for Apartment Rentals
Learning how to run a background check for apartment rentals is imperative. Referencing this guide will help you avoid missing a step.
Working with a property management company is the easiest way to conduct background checks. Contact Kerr Properties, Inc. to discuss our phenomenal services.