One of the best tips for new investors is this: screen your tenants well.
There’s a lot that contributes to the success and profitability of your investment experience, but nothing will have a larger impact that your ability to attract, place, and retain great residents. When you have good tenants in place, you can count on rent being paid on time. You know that the property will be clean, well-maintained, and cared for. You can also count on the lease being renewed year after year, helping you to avoid expensive vacancy and turnover costs.
We have some great landlord advice to share with property owners looking for outstanding Roseville tenants.
Establish Consistent Qualifying Criteria
Every landlord and property manager needs to establish a set of standards that must be met before a tenant can be approved to rent your property. For example, industry best practices say that tenants must earn at least three times the rental amount in order to be approved for a property.
This is pretty standard across the country, and we always recommend that the landlords we work with use it to screen tenants. Most tenants understand that they will have to meet reasonable requirements before they can be offered a lease agreement.
Having a documented set of criteria will protect you against any potentially expensive fair housing mistakes. When you’re screening tenants, you aren’t allowed to consider things like race, religion, disability, or familial status. A documented set of criteria will demonstrate the objective standards that every applicant must meet. It will show that you’re consistent when you’re screening applicants.
Provide all prospective applicants with your criteria before they view the property or complete an application. They should know what you’re looking for before they go through the process with you and pay an application fee.
Require a Signed and Complete Application from All Adult Tenants
It’s important that every adult 18 years of age or older completes and signs your application. You need to have all the relevant information before beginning the screening process, and you also need to get their consent before running credit reports, checking backgrounds, and conducting reference checks.
Don’t accept incomplete applications.
Tenant Screening Best Practices
You want to look at the complete picture when you’re screening for a great tenant. Look at these particulars:
- Verify income and employment
- Check credit and financial stability
- Look for a criminal history and eviction history
- Talk to former landlords and examine rental history
This type of screening will reduce your risk when you’re placing tenants. Highly qualified tenants will result in fewer evictions, less property damage, zero lease violations, and rent that’s paid on time consistently every month.
These standards are high, and we look for tenants who can meet them. Tenants have a lot of protections in California, so you want to be absolutely sure you’re placing a resident who will be able to meet their obligations and contribute to a great rental experience. You’ll have peace of mind knowing that your Roseville rental property is occupied by responsible individuals.
If you have any questions about screening and placing tenants or you’d like to access additional landlord advice from experienced Roseville property managers, please contact us at Action Properties.