A tenant background check is an important aspect of renting a property to anyone. If you plan to rent your property to someone you are strongly advised to perform a tenant background check first.
There are a few different approaches you can take to performing a background check on a possible tenant. One of your options is to conduct an interview over the phone. During the phone interview you will want to obtain information from the tenant such as their name and phone number as well as how many other people they would be bringing with them to live on your property, as in the case of a family. It is also appropriate to ask the tenant why they want to move out of where they are currently living. This is when you will also seek information about their employment and their salary. In addition to this information you are also well within your rights to ask if the tenant has children or pets or if they have a smoking habit. You can also ask them for a reference from a current or former landlord. This will give you a good idea of what your tenant is like and will serve as a warning if they have caused problems for other landlords in the past.
Conducting an interview in person is the best way to get a feel for the kind of personality your tenant has. When they show up for the in person interview you will want to pay attention to how they dress and how they carry themselves. If they are dressed sloppily or they look or smell dirty it is likely they would keep their apartment or house dirty and sloppy as well and this is generally the type of person you would want to avoid renting to.
How an individual interacts with you during the interview will also say a lot about what kind of tenant they would be. If they are rude, evasive or seem like they have something to hide, renting to them would probably be a huge risk you likely won’t want to take. This is your best chance to find out more about the individual you are considering renting to.
When they arrive for the interview, take a look at their car. The nicer the car is and the better it is maintained the more likely the individual is to make a good tenant. If they drive an old car in bad condition then chances are good they will have a hard time paying you rent.
There are tenant screening databases that you can access in order to find out more details about a tenant’s background. These databases will allow you to confirm a tenant’s social security number, their date of birth and all the previous addresses they have lived at.
However you choose to do it, make sure your tenant background check is thorough, ethical and legal before you proceed with your decision.