How to Perform a Tenant Background Check

You want to rent out your property, but you also want to rent it to someone who will take care of it and pay the rent on time. Instead of just going on gut instinct about a prospective tenant, savvy landlords perform a thorough background check before renting to anyone.

  • Thursday, May 11, 2017

  General   Criminal & Eviction Checks   

You want to rent out your property, but you also want to rent it to someone who will take care of it and pay the rent on time. Instead of just going on gut instinct about a prospective tenant, savvy landlords perform a thorough background check before renting to anyone.

Why? Because the person who wants to lease your property might dress nicely, have perfect manners and speak well, but a background check is the only way to find out if he is who he says he is, if he has anything nefarious in his background and if he possesses the financial means to afford your property.

So how do you do a background check?

First, gather information from the prospective tenant by having him complete a rental application. This document should collect the applicant's:

  • Complete name, social security number, date of birth and driver’s license information
  • Current address, former addresses, when he lived there and the name and phone number of previous landlords
  • Current employer with contact information, current income and previous employer with contact information
  • Bank name, bank phone number and account number
  • Credit references and their contact information
  • At least two personal references

Also have the applicant sign a credit report authorization form. This is what legally allows a landlord access to prospective tenant's credit information.

Once you have a completed application, then you can perform a background check. Do this by using a reputable tenant screening service, such as VerticalRent. These are companies that can run a credit check to see if a prospective tenant pays his bills on time. They can also perform a criminal background check to determine if he has any kind of criminal record. Once you have this information, then you are better equipped to decide if you want this applicant to become your tenant.

Be a smart landlord. Never rent to anyone without first performing a thorough background check. It will save headaches and hassles down the road. Get a free background check from VerticalRent today!


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