Landlords: How To Get Good Tenants Every Time

For rent signLandlords: How To Get Good Tenants Every Time

You own a house that you rent out to tenants.  You’ve heard nightmare stories about bad tenants trashing houses and sticking landlords with expensive repairs.

What if there was a SYSTEM you could use to ensure you NEVER get a bad tenant who trashes your investment property.

Follow these five easy steps and you’ll get a good tenant every time.

1. Use a detailed application that includes at least two references… three is better.  Insist on getting phone numbers for each reference.  Don’t let a prospective tenant put that task on your back.  Make the applicant do the work, or find another reference.  You also need the applicant’s social security number so you may have a credit report for the applicant pulled from the three repositories.

2. Get cashiers checks for a security deposit equal to one month of rent.  Get a cashiers check for the first month’s rent.  Get a check for the credit report.

3. CALL the references; Ask them if they would take the applicant as a tenant again.  Property managers call the references, but 9 out of 10 landlords don’t call.  Call the references.  Ask if they would rent to the applicant again. Ask how they returned the property to the owner.  Ask how they treated the property.

4. Get your family loan officer to pull the applicant’s credit report for you.   Look at the credit scores.  Scores of 700+ mean the applicants pay their bills on time.  Folks who take care of their money also take care of houses.  A score in the 600’s is marginal; The applicant would have to have excellent references.  Scores below 599 mean the applicant doesn’t take care of their money.   Read their credit reports.  If you have trouble understanding the credit report format, ask your family loan officer to interpret the report for you.

5. Most important, say to the applicant, “Let me tell you how I work.  You will set up an automatic electronic transfer of the rent money from your bank account to my bank account on the 30th of the month so the money will be in my account the 1st of the month.  Can we work together that way?”

You are looking for the applicant(s) who says, “Oh that’s wonderful that you work that way.  I pay my bills electronically, and knowing that the rent will be paid on time automatically is one less thing to think about”.

homes for rent woodbridge virginiaYou may get an applicant who says, “Oh but gee, we always pay our rent by check.  We’ll get it to you on time.”

Tell the applicant that you insist on automatic electronic payment.  Some applicants will drop out at this time.   Others may submit, and say, “Oh, okay.  We’ll set up an automatic payment.”  Don’t believe them.

In my experience, folks who say they will pay by check will set up an electronic transfer, then cancel it in 3 or 4 months, and start giving you checks on the 5th, 10th, or 15th of the month.

If you have two applicants, one who is happy that you take electronic funds transfer, and the other who wants to pay by check, take the one who wants to pay by electronic funds transfer.

So there are 5 tips for landlords that will assure you of getting a trustworthy tenant who will give your house good care.

If you want to list your house for rent on the MLS, I can help you with that.  Just call or text me at 703-677-1120.

I’d be happy to help you find a tenant for your house.

Text or call me at 703-677-1120.

Erick Blackwelder
Exit Realty Associates
Specializing In Northern Virginia
Equal Housing Opportunity


8998C Lorton Station Blvd
Lorton, VA  22079

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