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Should I screen my applicants in West Palm Beach? – Part 4

In the previous articles we discussed reviewing the credit report, the criminal background check, and the job and income verification check. By now you should be very aware of the importance of screening applicants for your beloved property. We’re not done yet, we still want to check out the applicant’s rental history. This is the one you really want to ensure looks as good as possible, because if the applicant can’t pay his past landlord why are you going to be any different.

Our application requires that the applicant place more than one landlord if they have not lived in the same property for the past 3 years. Why do we require this? If someone has been moving around a lot then there is probably something wrong. Not always, but there is a higher risk with someone who’s constantly on the move. When looking for someone to reside in your property, you want someone who is a bit more stable; as you know high turnover can cost you more in the long-term than quickly renting out the unit in the short-term. If you haven’t figured this out and do the math, as I always say – numbers never lie!

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Trust the previous landlord more than their current landlord? Imagine this scenario for a moment. You have a tenant who is driving you crazy and you suddenly get a call from another landlord doing a background check on your tenant. Knowing that if you give them a bad reference they will subsequently be denied by the new landlord and you are stuck with them even longer; what are the chances that you will give them a bad reference? You see where I am coming from. When you call the previous landlord you are more likely to get the truth about your applicants demeanor and on-time rental payment history.

We hope this little series has given you a little more insight on how to handle your rental property. The main thing you want to do is minimize the risk. This is not a perfect science, but the better your due-diligence is, the less risky your new resident will be and therefore provide you a nice residual income and your resident a nice place to live.

Happy Renting!
Juan Restrepo