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How to screen potential tenants for rental property leasing terms does not have to be a complicated task. If you are an owner working with a property management company, you may already have an agent working hard to maintain your rental listing. This can include rental collection, maintenance, and, of course, new tenant screening.

However, if you are planning to manage the property yourself use these 7 simple tips to help make the process easier. Originally developed by experienced real estate agents, the how to screen potential tenants list is a great start for anyone seeking a renter.

If you want to know how to screen tenants for rental property, the process may be easier than you realize. Here is how to screen potential tenants – in 7 simple steps!

  1. Know What to Screen

The screening process does not have to be complicated. The easiest way to keep things simple is to start with a clear intention. Having a set goal as to what you are screening for makes the entire process more clear. Seamless step-by-step execution is all that is left once you design a clear plan.

Here are a few points to use when creating a screening to-do list: minimum income of 3x the rent, excellent work history, verifiable income from employer/tax information, a credit score of 640 or above, clean criminal background check, and prior residential references.

These are the best points to look for when you have to screen potential tenants for the rental property.

  1. Pre-Screen

When you want to screen potential tenants for rental property available, the first step is creating a what to screen for list, then you can begin to screen candidates.

Begin with a pre-screening to help you avoid applicants that can be eliminated with a single question. For example, a pre-screening questionnaire may include, “Do you have any pets?” Once you know that the answer is no, you can prepare any pet-free rental properties for those specific potential tenants.

  1. Check Credit

When you want to screen potential tenants for rental property management, you need to be sure they have a strong credit history. Obtain a detailed credit report to know for sure that the tenant can pay bills on time.

This also allows access to the applicants’ debt history, so you can see the percentage of monthly income their rent with take up. Ideally, the lowest possible credit score you should accept is 640, however, some renters allow a score as low as 620.

  1. Background Check

Pulling the credit score of a prospective tenant is a must. You also need to know if the person has any criminal activity in their past. To do this, simply check with your state to find where to locate a list of registered sex offenders, terrorist watch lists, and how to perform a criminal background check.

  1. Verify Employment

Today, there are many different ways to create false documents. These forms can include employment verification. In order to complete a trustworthy employment verification, obtain reference phone numbers during the pre-screening.

Then, if you want to verify a number of potential tenants for employment, you can do so early in the process. In doing this, you may be able to reveal additional details about the renter, that can help you decide if they are the right tenant for your property.

Verify Employment

  1. Check References

When a new prospective tenant is providing data, either during pre-screening or the application process, have them enter a list of references as well. This can include employment, personal, and rental references that basically provide you with a phone number or email contact.

Use the contact to check in with their previous landlord or anyone else they listed. Have a few questions prepared so that you can get to the bottom of things quickly. Some of the best questions to ask references during a screen potential tenants for rental property interview include, “Do they have a responsible personality?” and “Does this person follow through with integrity?”

  1. Process the Application

Once you have finished the pre-screening and used the process to find the top tenants, you can offer them a full application. When they have completed the application and paid the processing fee, you can make the final call.

You will need to analyze the credit data, background information, and verify income and employment history, in order to make the right decision. Then choose the applicant for your rental property.

How-to screen potential tenants for rental property management is simple to do when you have the right list. Use this simple 7-step process to find the right tenant for your needs. If you have more questions about this and similar topics, reach out to LCI Realty, we are happy to help! And good luck!