What is Direct-to-Consumer Tenant Screening Anyhow?

VerticalRent is dedicated to providing you with actionable information that you can quickly put to use with our platform.

  • Friday, December 20, 2013

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As a VerticalRent user, we are dedicated to providing you with actionable information that you can quickly put to use with our platform. Many customers who find VerticalRent assume they can re-enter information from a paper rental application (including a social security number) and pull a credit report without closely reading our FAQs. Our platform is not a traditional tenant screening service.

The direct-to-consumer (or consumer-initiated) tenant screening model is a new concept that began taking roots in the last few years. Many renters complained of lengthy rental applications and high processing fees charged by landlords and property managers. From the renter's perspective, a consumer-initiated tenant screening model makes perfect sense because they can apply to multiple properties by sharing their electronic rental application and credit report with a click of a mouse with no-impact to their credit score.

But, what's in it for you -- the landlord? Simply put, VerticalRent streamlines the rental application and decision-making process for you, while also helping you remain FCRA compliant as a landlord. Landlords are required to verify and certify their permissable purpose to obtain consumer reports from prospective tenants. It's the law and we take it very seriously. The consumer-initiated model, however, grants you a few more conveniences such as avoiding setup fees and onsite inspections. Since the interested renter is involved in the hand-shakes back and forth, you can rest assured that our platform takes every measure to keep you FCRA compliant. If you decline a rental application, as an example, we even provide you with the option to submit back an adverse action notice.

The costs of an application package (rental app, credit, criminal, and eviction report) are passed onto the prospective renter for $29.95. If you only want to collect a rental app electronically, you can do that for free. All you need to do is change your settings in the screening module of the platform.

Our credit data is sourced from Experian and our background checks are sourced from over 600 million unique criminal records, as well as civil case, bankruptcy, and eviction records. Our repository is built from over 1,400 different government municipalities at the county, state, and federal levels across the United States. Some of our sources include: Department of Corrections, Arrest Records, Warrant Records, Administrative Office of the Courts, Patriot Act records, and Sex Offender Records.


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