Property Management Blog

Tenant Screening: Best Practices for the Best Results in Charleston, SC

System - Monday, November 13, 2017
Property Management Blog

Knowing how to find a good tenant will help you be a more successful landlord. Today, we’re sharing some of the steps you should take when you’re screening tenants.

How to Find a Tenant: Prepare the Property

Before the application process, get the home rent ready. You’ll need to aggressively advertise the property and allow for showings. It’s important that every applicant personally view the home before they apply for it.

How to Find Tenants: Fair Housing

Understand the laws, including the federal Fair Housing Act. You need to have a clear policy and apply it fairly and consistently to all applicants. Establish your rental criteria, and apply that criteria equally for all applicants.

Tenant Screening

Landlords owe others the duty of screening applicants. Have an application and collect an application fee. The purpose of comprehensive tenant screening is to find the most highly qualified tenants for the property. Here are the things you need to gather when screening tenants:

  • Verify identity with a government-issued ID 
  • Verify employment with pay stubs
  • Verify residency history 
  • Ask for proof of income 
  • Screen for credit history
  • Conduct a criminal background screening
  • Find out if pets will be included on the lease 
  • Search for an eviction history 

Require a fully completed application for all potential residents 18 years of age or older. This will weed out any people who aren’t serious or who have less satisfactory qualifications. Most high risk tenants fail to provide a complete application.

Property Management Charleston: Leasing 

Once a tenant is approved, collect the security deposit within 48 hours. If the deposit is not collected, move onto the next qualified applicant. This is a first come, first served policy. If an application is not approved, inform the tenants of your decision. When you don’t have a social security number or a government-issued ID, you need to make sure all the other information is accurate. You might need to find a different way to gather all the information you need.

When you’re screening applicants, don’t settle. It will cost you more in the long run. If you need more information on how to find a good tenant or anything pertaining to Charleston property management, please contact us at Rent Holy City.