Friday, July 13, 2012

Safe Ways to Pre-Screen Tenant Applicants

The Safest Way to Pre-Screen Prospective Tenants

How do you make first contact with new tenant prospects? Do you field telephone calls from prospective tenants at your home number? Do you talk to caller after caller only to realize most of them are not what you are looking for? Should these unknown strangers to have your telephone number and waste countless hours of your valuable time? As we become more experienced landlords, we're learning better ways to avoid bad situations and protect ourselves from dangerous people, time wasters and unqualified prospects.

1. FREE LPA Prospect Pre-Screening Card
With HTML Code for your Internet Ad

I recently began using a basic little chart on my internet rental ads that has made quite a difference in setting up appointments. I used to advertise in local newspapers, and spend thousands on rental ads, but websites like Craigslist and The LPA Rentals Available section have been a helpful way to save advertising dollars!

Just imagine receiving e-mails from prospective tenants with the pre-screening information you want before even talking to them. (With Craigslist, the customer doesn't even have to see your real e-mail address or phone number!) Call prospective tenants to set up appointments only if they meet your pre-screening qualifications! It has never been easier. It saves time, advertising money and helps you zero in on the tenant you're looking for...

Click here for the full article


  1. I found these Safe Ways to Pre-Screen Prospective Tenants very helpful! If you'll not apply at least one of this, you may eventually lose huge amount of money and waste time with troublesome tenants.

  2. Nice I also share with you something hope this helpful for you my friends. This is a matter of personal preference. Some landlords find that charging an application fee, such as $15, to run a credit check saves them money in the long run because prospective tenants with poor credit will usually not consent to pay a fee. Other landlords are afraid that charging a fee will deter even good tenants from applying to rent their property. Another option is to charge the fee, but if the tenant rents the apartment, you will deduct the fee from the first month’s rent or will add it to their security deposit. A final option is to only perform credit checks on applicants that first leave a deposit for the apartment and have completely filled out your application, so that you know they are truly interested in the apartment.
    landlord tenant screening

    1. Hi Edward,
      You are so right about that. We include in our LPA Rental Application a Non-refundable screening fee agreement. The prospective tenant pays a screening fee when the rental application is submitted to you. This fee notonly covers you for the cost of checking references and running credit reports, but it also weeds out less serious and/or unqulaified prospects.

  3. I accepted a 500 deposit from a tenant who was going to move in the middle of the month and then the tenant found something different to rent. Am I obligated to return the 500 deposit to the tenant when they haven't even moved in, signed a lease but did complete the application process?

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  5. I'm glad that you didn't forget about credit reports. This one of the essential stages of tenant screening. However, you failed to mention background checks that gives landlord a detailed report of the tenant’s past. Background checks are important in all tenant screenings – both credit and criminal. Landlord may still decide to rent to someone with a criminal history, but it’s better to be prepared ahead of time. Several rental listing platform, like Rentberry and Zillow offer investigative services for a fee.
    I see the picture of Experian service in this article, I have been using it for a couple of years. I’m absolutely satisfied with this service.

  6. I’ve connected with numerous people who got scammed by tenants.
    There are services out there which can assist with screening for bad tenant such as

    Alerts - BZ Interviews