Selecting the right tenants for your rental property is a critical decision that can significantly impact your experience as a landlord. A thorough tenant screening process helps ensure you have responsible and reliable renters who will take care of your property and pay rent on time. Check out these top tips for screening quality tenants so you can make informed decisions regarding residential property management in Calgary.
15 Screening Tips For Quality Tenants
Step #1: Start with a Detailed Application
Begin the screening process by providing potential tenants with a comprehensive rental application. This application should request essential information, including personal details, employment history, income verification, and references. Encourage applicants to be thorough in completing the form.
Step #2: Verify Employment & Income
Stable employment and sufficient income are crucial indicators of a tenant’s ability to pay rent consistently. Verify the applicant’s employment by contacting their employer or requesting recent pay stubs or tax returns. Ideally, a tenant’s monthly income should be at least three times the rent amount.
Step #3: Check Rental History
Contact the applicant’s previous landlords to inquire about their rental history. Ask about their payment history, adherence to lease terms, and whether they left the property in good condition. A history of responsible renting is a positive sign.
Step #4: Run a Credit Check
Performing a credit check is essential to assess an applicant’s financial responsibility. Look for a credit score that indicates financial stability and a history of paying bills on time. Consider setting a minimum credit score requirement to streamline the screening process for residential tenancy.
Step #5: Verify References
Request and contact personal and professional references provided by the applicant. Speaking with references can provide valuable insights into the tenant’s character, reliability, and ability to maintain a rental property.
Step #6: Evaluate Criminal Background
Conduct a criminal background check to ensure your property’s and other tenants’ safety and security. While a minor offence may not necessarily disqualify an applicant, serious criminal convictions should raise concerns.
Step #7: Set Clear Rental Criteria
Establish specific rental criteria and guidelines that all applicants must meet. These criteria may include minimum income requirements, credit score thresholds, and acceptable criminal history. Adhering to consistent criteria helps avoid discrimination claims.
Step #8: Meet in Person
Schedule an in-person meeting with prospective tenants to assess their demeanour and communication skills. This meeting provides an opportunity to clarify lease terms, expectations, and any questions the applicant may have.
Step #9: Consider a Co-Signer or Guarantor
If an applicant doesn’t meet all your criteria but appears promising in other aspects, you may consider allowing a co-signer or guarantor on the lease. This individual is legally responsible for rent payments if the tenant fails to meet their obligations.
Step #10: Trust Your Instincts
Intuition can play a valuable role in tenant screening. If something doesn’t feel right or raises concerns during the application process, it’s essential to trust your instincts and proceed with caution.
Step #11: Use a Property Management Company
Consider enlisting the services of a reputable residential property management in Calgary. Professional property managers have extensive experience in tenant screening, ensuring a thorough and reliable process.
Step #12: Follow Legal Guidelines
Ensure your tenant screening process complies with all relevant federal, provincial, and local laws. Familiarize yourself with fair housing laws and regulations to prevent discrimination and legal issues.
Step #13: Document Everything
Maintain meticulous records of your tenant screening process, including applications, references, credit reports, and applicant communication. These records can be invaluable if any disputes or legal issues arise.
Step #14: Communicate Effectively
Maintain clear and open communication with applicants throughout the screening process. Promptly inform them of the results and any next steps, whether approved or denied.
Step #15: Keep Consistency
Consistency is key in tenant screening. Treat all applicants equally and fairly, applying your rental criteria consistently to avoid potential legal problems.
Expert Screening with Residential Property Management in Calgary
Screening quality tenants is an essential aspect of successful property management in Calgary. By following these top tips and maintaining a thorough and consistent screening process, you can secure responsible tenants who will contribute positively to your rental property’s success. Whether you manage your properties independently or enlist the services of a property management company, effective tenant screening is a critical element of a thriving real estate investment.
Tristone Property Management is Calgary’s best property management company. We pride ourselves on our inspiring and top-quality services used to undertake essential property-related duties to minimize your workload. Tristone is also eager to lend our communities of Chestermere and Airdrie our assistance to keenly manage all residential properties and condo companies. Using our management expertise, Tristone handles intricate details revolving around all things property management to make life easier. We supply only our most efficient and satisfactory services in every property we oversee. With so much work to maintain a property, Tristone Property Management wants to complete these tasks with our utmost professionalism.