It is important for property managers in Boynton Beach to protect their investments and knowing how to run a background check on prospective tenants is something that cannot be ignored. Tenants that have been evicted in the past, have a history of not paying their rent, or have a criminal record are all some of a few serious indicators that you should pay attention to before making a decision to rent out your property.
To run a proper background check, the first step is to require anyone who is interested in renting your property to fill out a rental application form. There are many tenant screening solutions you can choose from that cater to any property management company in Boynton Beach.
There are also other important steps you should take when knowing how to run a background check such as contacting an applicant’s references as well as paying attention to other safety considerations. To help you protect your investment by avoiding potential problems in the future, here are a few useful tips you should consider.
Require an Application Form
You may be surprised to know that some rental companies are so eager to get a renter that they will avoid an application form altogether. This is often a huge mistake since a rental application form provides you with all the necessary information you need about the applicant and provide enough information to do a background check. A detailed application should include (but not be limited to the following information):
- Current contact details
- Social Security number
- Names and addresses of current and previous landlords and employers
- Bank account number
- Driver’s license number
- Authorization to run a credit check by the potential tenant
Do a Credit Check
Knowing how to run a background check also requires you to run a credit check. This will require you to attach an additional form that goes along with a potential tenant’s application. A credit check should also be a requirement for all prospective tenants and this is usually a credit report authorization form which is in compliance with Section 604 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
This law requires that landlords must ask for permission before running a credit check on any applicant. As a landlord, this step is very beneficial because if the applicant denies giving permission to run a credit check, you have the right to deny that applicant the ability to rent your property. In addition, an applicant who denies authorization may be a good indication that this person is not a suitable renter.
When running a credit check, you want to run a credit report with all three credit reporting agencies: Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. Credit reports will provide valuable information you need to know about a prospective tenant’s credit history to include:
- Credit score
- Unlawful detainer lawsuits
- Public record events
- Other events that have affected the applicant’s credit record
The credit score is something you should focus on because it rates the financial reliability of the applicant. As a rule of thumb, the higher the score, the more likely you will have a suitable applicant.
Hire a Tenant Screening Company
Tenant screening companies are also helpful when you want to know more about how to run a background check. You can choose a company to do it locally and there are also several companies you can find online. A background check will include a state and national criminal report, prior address history verification, nationwide eviction history, and a sex offender database search. Depending on the thoroughness of the investigation, the price for a background check can range from $20-$50 depending on the service you choose.
Tenant screening companies also handle credit reports so it is possible to take all of the hassles out of doing the tenant screening work yourself. Many companies offer consumer initiated tenant screening reports which require the person who is applying for the property to purchase a copy of their report and share it to apply for a rental property. These reports are often all-inclusive to include a credit report and nationwide criminal background check, credit record check, and other useful information. Another great benefit is that these services allow a landlord or property management company in Boynton Beach to never incur any cost for using this type of service.
Knowing how to run a background check means to actually contact the references that are listed on a potential tenant’s application. This is a step that many people tend to skip over but it is very important since you can actually speak with someone who can vouch for the applicant. Not only will it help you make a more informed decision, but you will also be able to make sure that the information provided on the application form is true.
When working with potential applicants, you will meet people that you have never met before, maybe give them a ride, and have close interactions with them when showing a property. You want to make sure to address any safety concerns before doing these types of tasks and giving someone you just met such direct personal access. This can only be done with a criminal background check to include searches on the national sex offender registry. You may not want to extend an offer to people nor interact with them if they have committed serious crimes or sex offenses in the past, so it is imperative to address safety concerns at the beginning by knowing how to run a criminal background check.
Protect Your Investment by Avoiding Risk
Property managers in Boynton Beach should always be focused on protecting their investments by avoiding risk. The best way to do so is to know how to run a criminal background check. They show you if an applicant is qualified and give you a concise overview of their past. In order to get quality applicants for your investment property, make sure you can confidently find renters you can trust by running a thorough background check on every applicant.