4 Reasons You Should Screen Tenants

by | Apr 11, 2022 | Rental Property Management Tips

Creating a consistent and in-depth screening process is one of the best ways to make an informed decision when choosing your next tenant. Minimize the risk of late payments, non-payments, property damage, and evictions by enforcing a thorough screening process for all potential tenants.

If you’re consistently dealing with difficult residents, it’s possible that your tenant screening process could use an overhaul. When properly screening, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing you made an informed decision to lessen the risk of missed payments.

1. Understand Applicants Current Financial Situation

When it comes to understanding applicants’ current financial situation, a full credit report allows for a more absolute understanding of a person’s financial background. Though many landlords focus exclusively on credit scores, paying attention to the entire credit history gives a more complete picture for the property manager.

Does your applicant have high credit card debt? Do they regularly miss payments from different lenders? Do they have a large amount of outstanding debt? Asking these types of questions as you view credit history can be helpful to create a better understanding of future tenants’ ability to pay rent on time.

2. Likeliness to Pay on Time

For many landlords, a major concern is if their tenants can submit payments in full and in a timely fashion. When taking an applicant’s credit report into consideration, it is important to check for a history of chronic late payments as this is one of the best indicators of the ability to make monthly payments.

Reference checks can help fill in the blanks for landlords too. Request landlord and employee references to confirm your applicant’s record of making on-time payments and maintaining stable employment. It never hurts to ask to see a paystub to authenticate their stated income is accurate.

3. Protect Your Property & Neighborhood

Most tenant screening services also cover criminal background checks. Be thorough in reviewing an applicant’s criminal record in its entirety as not all hits are created equal. Plenty of hopeful tenants have small or older criminal convictions that can be overlooked on a case-by-case basis. It is important to always check a potential tenant’s criminal history so you can trust them with your property and neighborhood.

4. Avoid Potential Evictions

Removing a tenant is a lengthy, costly process that no landlord wants to be a part of. On average, it can take anywhere from three to four weeks to evict a tenant. According to TransUnion, removing a renter costs an average of $2500-$3500. Knowing your rental applicants’ eviction history can help you avoid being in an unfavorable position and can lessen the chance of the need to remove someone through the court process.

Make your tenant search easier with a screening service that provides a quick and secure way to screen potential renters through a single system. Visit Tenant Verification Service to get started!

Property management software for Canadian Condos.

Property Boss

Property management software for single family, multifamily, and student housing.


Screening services for property managers and landlords. Select a market below.