Every landlord needs and deserves tenants who not only take good care of their property, but also fulfill all their obligations as tenants. This means doing everything possible not to land the wrong tenants. It requires knowing as much about potential tenants as there is to know.
The first thing we feel you need to know when looking for tenants is that you need to have a methodical approach. For instance, instead of talking with potential tenants on the phone, opt for a face-to-face conversation as this will allow you to better gauge whether or not they are suitable. Believe it or not, your landlord insurance policy may at times require you to provide information on how you selected your tenants in the event that you make a claim. With that in mind, here’re a few tips you can apply to find the best tenants and keep them:
Interview them: Ask them if they are interested in living in your property, whether or not they are interest in renting your property, the last few places they rented and why they relocated, how many people will be moving into the rental property, if they have pets etc. You might also want to talk about the tenancy terms and whether they have a problem with them.
Credit history: Their credit history gives you access to an array of information including their involvement in bankruptcies, court judgments, collection actions and payment defaults, credit rating, cross-references to other credit inquiries against them, date of birth, real names as well as aliases, and recent addresses among other information. Credit check agencies can help you dig all the information related to credit history quite easily and at an affordable fee.
Pre-tenancy application form: This helps landlords to collect vital information that can determine their suitability of potential tenants. Pre-tenancy applications usually outline the kind of information landlords can collect with the application and their obligations regarding collection of potential tenants’ personal information.
Tenancy Tribunal: Check whether potential tenants have been to the Tenancy Tribunal and their reasons for doing so. Also check whether they were the applicants or an application against them was made. As a landlord, inform them that you will check the previous addresses they provide as well as their names on the Tenancy Tribunal site.
Watch how their kids behave in the house while you are conducting views of the house
Another great tip is to check how their cars are presented
At Inspire Property Management we make sure with all out tenants that we complete criminal checks, credit checks and references from past landlords. We also have a dedicated letting manager who has been letting tenants for years and actually sits down with potential tenants to get a feel for the right fit as well as the right property. After many years on the job we know what the tell-tale signs are of a bad tenant before they even sign up.
We hope we have given you some good advice regarding finding a tenant and that you make use of the information. If you would rather not go through the hassle of finding a tenant let us know and we will happily do this for you.