6 Common Mistakes With Screening Tenants to Avoid for Landlords

Screening tenants will help you generate safe cash flow. You can feel more confident when handing over the keys.

However, the tenant screening process isn’t perfect. Some landlords make mistakes with screening tenants that lead to nightmare situations.

You might end up with a squatter, property damage, or another scenario. Avoiding common mistakes increases the odds of signing on great tenants.

We’ll discuss mistakes with screening tenants so you can avoid them.

1. Rushing to Screen Tenant

Some landlords rush to screen tenants. They overlook background checks for tenants and don’t ask for enough information.

Landlords want new tenants quickly because they provide cash flow. It takes several months of rent payments to recover from a vacant month.

If you rush to screen tenants, you can find yourself in more trouble than it’s worth. 

2. Not Interviewing Potential Tenants

Interviewing potential tenants helps you learn more about them. You get to see the person behind the data.

These interviews can confirm your feelings. You’ll feel even more confident about a tenant. 

Interviews can also change your mind. You may no longer feel comfortable giving the keys to a certain tenant.

During interviews, have tenants bring their pets with them. See how they behave during the conversation.

3. Not Investing in Tenant Screening Software

Technology is your friend in the tenant screening process. It can save you time and help you choose a tenant sooner.

Tenant screening software such as Rent Safe makes your life easier. This software keeps you organized and provides more data.

Tenant screening software reduces human error and smooths out the entire process. This investment will modernize your tenant screening process.

4. Not Doing Research on Your Tenants

Landlords should run background checks and ask for each tenant’s credit report. This information provides clarity on a tenant’s behavior and financial health.

Landlords look at financial health to monitor a tenant’s ability to make payments. You don’t want to endure legal battles to get non-paying tenants out of the property.

5. Not Checking in With References

Your tenant’s previous landlord can share valuable details. They can share if a tenant behaved well on their premises and made payments on time.

Tenants will likely treat you the same way they treated their prior landlords. A history of late payments and hassles suggests more challenges in the future. 

Place tenants on your shortlist if the prior landlord speaks highly of them.

6. Not Complying With Federal and State Housing Laws

Violating federal and local housing laws can lead to penalties and fines. These laws protect tenants from discrimination. 

Federal laws affect all landlords, while state housing laws vary. Stay in the loop for all of these laws and pay attention to any changes.

Landlords may violate a law without knowing it. Make sure you understand local laws as well. The housing laws can vary from city to city in the same state.

Avoid More Mistakes With Screening Tenants 

These six common mistakes with screening tenants come up often. Some people make additional mistakes not on this list.

If you want to become a better landlord, continue reading this blog. It contains valuable resources to help you master your craft.