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10 Awesome Tips on Finding the Best Tenants

There will be a day when even the best tenant moves on from your rental property for one reason or another. When this happens, you’ll want to make sure that you take the necessary precautions to bring in an other excellent tenant to pay rent on time, treat your rental as if they owned the property, and abide by the rules set up in the lease. While tenant screening is going to be your first line of defense, you will need to be prepared for the entire process. Take a look at some of the tips Landlordstation has put together below for finding the best tenant for your rental property:

  1. Know How to Market – Your first step in finding that amazing tenant will be to cast a wide net to bring in as many applicants as possible. The more applicants you reach, the more people you have to choose from.
  2. Be Careful How You Limit Yourself – There are certain limitations that will help protect your rental property and investment, but be careful not to limit yourself so badly that you miss out on great tenants that can’t apply.
  3. Be Ready to Answer Questions – Applicants will have a list of questions for you as the landlord, and it’s best to have these answers prepared for them ahead of time. If you’re scrambling for even basic answers, they may move on to their next option.
  4. Minimum Requirements – Don’t be afraid to set minimum requirements for your rental (as long as they are legal minimum requirements). If an applicant does not make enough money to pay rent, does not have a credit history that instills confidence in you that they will make payments on time, etc etc…you do not want to waste your time or theirs by going through the entire process just to decline them at the end.
  5. Know How to Screen Your Tenants – Tenant screening will be your first line of defence against delinquent tenants. Tradelines can provide you a great deal of insight into their payment history and how reliable they have been in the past. Take this (combined with the other information you gather) and use it to form up an educated opinion on what type of tenant they may be for you if you were to accept them into your rental.
  6. Verify References – References will help you gain a better idea about who your applicant is as a person, but you’ll want to make sure that they do not hand you a name or a phone number for a prior landlord or employer that really belongs to a friend that will simply tell you what the applicant wants you to hear.
  7. Verify Income – You will need to have a set minimum income (or rent to income ratio) before you start to accept applications. Once the applicant provides their income to you, verifying that income is your next step.
  8. Watch for Scams – Not every applicant that applies to your rental will be an honest person. You will need to be careful of scams from those that are often referred to as “professional tenants.” These people know how to work every angle to get into a rental and then stay as long as they can without paying rent.
  9. Choosing Between Applicants – In the best case scenario you will have more than one applicant that fits what you are looking for in your next tenant. If so, you will need to have a way to choose between multiple qualified applicants.
  10. Stand Out – Competition can be tough in certain cities, but competition against corporately owned rentals can feel like a losing battle. Make sure that you highlight what you can bring to the table that corporations often do not.

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