As a landlord, you have plenty of things to worry about. Choosing a new tenant is probably the hardest decision you will have to make. After all, how do you know if they will pay the rent or damage your property?
If you rent out property, you will need to create a solid contract. But, you will also want to make sure you pick the right tenant to sign that rental agreement. Use these tips for ensuring you select a good tenant.
Do a Real Background Check
Don’t just do a credit check and assume you have a great tenant. Instead, perform a little due diligence and do a real background check. This includes looking into criminal history, the employment record for the tenant, and whether or not he or she has rented before. Basically, you want someone who is responsible and reliable.
Call, Call, Call
You are given references from potential tenants, but do you take the time to call those references? This is the most important step, but too many landlords skip over calling on past housing references and even character references. If you do call, see what past landlords have to say, especially when it comes to paying rent on time, any complaints or how the property was left when the tenant moved out.
Always be Open
A great tenant may be one that doesn’t have a perfect credit score or perhaps even has a foreclosure. Do not just rely on a person’s credit report to tell you if he or she is a good tenant. After all, everyone falls on hard times. So, instead of assuming they are a bad choice because of a poor credit score, ask them about the credit history and what happened. For all you know the tenant just got caught in the changing interest rates and ended up with a home they couldn’t afford.
Have a Good Rental Agreement
Hire an attorney to create your lease agreement. While you could use a DIY template online, they don’t always cover your county or state housing laws and they may have gaps. Your property is unique; therefore, your rental agreement should be equally unique. An attorney can draft a rental agreement based on the needs of your property and tailor that agreement to the particular tenant you’re thinking of putting in your property.
Hire an Attorney Today
If you have a residential property, you need a solid lease agreement to protect your investment. Contact West Palm Beach Real Estate Lawyer at the Law Office of Kelley & Fulton today for a no obligation consultation. We can assist you with your tenant agreements as well as help you with background checks and tenant selection. Call now at 561-491-1200.