There are almost 45 million renter households in the USA today. If you're a property manager or owner of a rental property, you'll be looking to keep one or more of those homes occupied.
While continual occupancy is the goal, it shouldn't come at the expense of the safety and condition of your property. That's where effective tenant screening is essential. It stops you from entering into contracts with problematic tenants.
Learn how to spot those red flags below.
1. You're Skipping the Initial Interview
When screening new tenants, you should chat with them before they even get to the application stage. The first time you engage with a potential new tenant is your chance to ask vital questions, like "Why are you moving out of your current house?" and "Are you open to providing references?"
Don't miss this step in your hurry to get a tenant on board. The answers to these initial questions are crucial.
2. Your Pre-Qualifying Questions Fail to Catch Problems
Another of the question-related tenant screening tips is, well, failing to set up your application questionnaire properly. This means ensuring you have a highly detailed list of questions that covers everything from credit score to pets and accessibility requirements.
3. You Settle for the First Applicant
Don't hurry the tenant screening process by accepting the first application that comes your way. Instead, you want to attract and accept applications from several tenants.
This gives you more control over the selection process and ensures you aren't pushed into giving your property to sub-par applications for want of rent money.
4. Not Creating Detailed Listings
Problematic tenants aren't always the issue. Sometimes, you have flaky tenants that don't stay for the duration of their contract. While this is frustrating for you, it's not always the tenant's fault.
If your listings don't include all the information about your property, tenants might be disappointed. They may find the property doesn't have everything they need or thought they were signing a lease to receive.
Improve tenant screening by detailing everything your property has and doesn't have or allow.
5. You're Getting Complaints from Neighbors
Probably one of the most alarming red flags regarding tenants is getting complaints from the neighbors, or worse, calls from the police!
If this is happening to you, it's a clear sign your application process is failing miserably. This might be time to employ the services of a property management company that has the resources to ensure background checks are conducted properly.
After all, knowing how to find tenants is only half the battle.
Pay Attention to Your Tenant Screening Process
Tenant screening in Okhlamoa City is probably the most important aspect of rental property management. Without tenants, you wouldn't have a rental property income at all. But without good tenants, the ROI on that rental property income probably isn't worth all the hassle.
If you're struggling to get it right, reach out to Home River Group. As the premier Oklahoma City property management company, we're well-positioned to help you improve your tenant screening process and land the tenants your pristine property deserves.