Renting your home isn’t always easy and there are a lot of mistakes landlords can make especially when it comes to accepting a tenant. Now, finding a tenant may be easy especially if your home is in a great location. However, finding a qualified tenant may be extremely difficult. That is IF you do a thorough screening, which not all landlords do. Below are 3 mistakes landlords make when accepting a tenant.
One of the biggest mistakes a landlord can make is accepting a tenant without doing a thorough rental screening before accepting them. Now, it’s rare a landlord will meet a tenant or receive an application from a tenant and accept them. Especially without pulling their credit, criminal record, eviction record or verify their employment/income. However, I have encountered landlords who want to think the best of everyone and don’t necessarily feel we have to “jump through hoops” to screen a tenant. Landlords need to remember this is their home, they are responsible for it. So if they put a tenant in place that turns out to be unemployed and doesn’t have money to pay rent it can become very costly and time-consuming to evict them.
Deposits are Collected for a Reason!
Another big mistake some landlords make is not collecting a security deposit or allowing a tenant to apply their security deposit towards rent. A security deposit is a deposit tenants make to ensure they leave the property in the same condition they rented it in. If they don’t the landlord may be able to collect a portion or all of the deposit to “fix” what the tenant damaged. And landlords need to keep in mind just because the tenant has been a “good” tenant and paid rent on time does not mean they didn’t trash the house. So it’s never a good idea to forgo collecting a deposit or allowing a tenant to apply it towards rent.
Accepting a “pet” without knowing what they’re accepting is another mistake landlords make. Now, 90% of tenants probably have a pet, but how many do they have? What breed? What’s their weight? Is the breed allowed in the community or city? A lot of communities and/or cities have pet restrictions, which may be enforced. So if your tenant has a restricted pet or pets it may negatively impact you. Did their dog, that’s prohibited, bite someone? Guess who may responsible? Yep, the landlord. It’s best to find out exactly what type of pet(s) the tenant has, ask for pictures along with their vet records.
Screen, screen, screen prospective tenant’s! Don’t feel uncomfortable that you’re requesting so much information from them. This is part of the process and the norm in most areas. If a prospective tenant refuses to provide information, like their current landlords information or proof of income, there’s probably a reason. This should be a huge red flag. Not only should you be requesting information you should be verifying it too! I’ve received self-provided credit reports from prospective tenants, which were 200 points above the report I pulled. This was a clear indication that the credit report was altered.
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— Michelle Gibson (@WellingtonHomez) November 27, 2018
About the Author
The above real estate article “3 Mistakes Landlords Make when Accepting a Tenant” was written by Michelle Gibson of Wellington Florida Real Estate. Specializing in residential real estate since 2001 in Wellington and the surrounding area. Not only does Michelle assist buyers and sellers, she assists landlords and tenants too. She would love to share her expertise and guide you through the entire real estate process.
We service the following areas; Wellington, Lake Worth, Royal Palm Beach, Boynton Beach, West Palm Beach, Loxahatchee, Greenacres and more. If you are considering selling your home, we welcome the opportunity to work with you and list your home with a top Realtor in Wellington Florida