Tenant screening is actually a dual evaluation process, whereby the Property Manager (interviewer) is evaluating the prospective tenant’s overall suitability as a renter, and the applicant is, in turn, evaluating the manager’s attitude and the suitability of the landlord’s premises for his/her lifestyle and budgetary requirements.
Initial phone contact by the renter offers the property manager the opportunity to “pre-screen” the applicant prior to arranging a showing of the property.
A brief summation of the leasing requirements, monthly rental, pet or no pet allowances, etc., and the applicant’s answers and reactions to the lease obligations and restrictions should be the deciding factor in whether or not either party is willing to arrange a face-to-face meeting.
Should the potential candidate for occupancy meet with the property manager to view the premises, it is important for the property manager to be aware that a pleasant and friendly manner toward the applicant goes a long way toward assuring the applicant that he/she would be comfortable in these new surroundings.
The all-important pre-tenancy application form should require specific information from the renter to ensure the property manager and landlord that the prospective tenant has been properly “screened.”
- Past and present financial information – Banking references, etc.
- Recent job history – current income
- Current employer information
- Credit evaluation – any credit denials in the past seven years?
- Credit cards in the applicants name
- Thorough credit background check
- Previous landlord references – late payment history
- Previous address
- Reason for moving
- Number of Occupants & Ages
- Has applicant or any member of the household been convicted of a crime in the last ten years?
- Has the applicant been in default of a financial obligation in the last seven years?
Of course, the above is only a sampling of a detailed questionnaire, but should the applicant refuse to answer any of the required questions, or prove evasive in any way, the property manager should disqualify the applicant.
Additionally, the property manager should thoroughly explain the terms of the lease, and reach a full agreement with the renter that the leasing terms will be upheld.
If the renter has any objections, or asks for an alteration to any of the leasing agreement provisions, the property manager must immediately address these issues, and either resolve them to the renters satisfaction, agree to a compromise, or deny the request.
It is vitally important for both the landlord and property manager to understand that the prospective tenant interviewing process and the tenant application form be in strict accordance with the Government’s Federal Fair Housing Act rules and regulatory procedures. A failure to understand and abide by these regulations could result in severe penalties and lawsuits.
If you have any questions about our Tenant Screening process, feel free to give North American Realty of Nevada a call and we will gladly answer any and all your questions! We can be reached at 702.376.7379 or you can complete a management inquiry form.