5 Tips to Avoid Legal Issues With Your Property Rental
Renting out a piece of property can be an excellent way to make a mostly passive income. With quality tenants, and a home that's in good shape, being a landlord can be more natural than you might think. Maybe it's time for you to move your family to a single family home in Delray Beach but you are not ready to sell your beach front condo. Luckily you can make that Delray Beach condo work for you.
Screening potential tenants before you rent to them is the first step toward that.
Here are five tips on why you should screen tenants before renting.
Know their financial status
Landlords can evict tenants for failure to pay the rent, but that takes time and results in more lost rent while you wait. With tenant screening in place, you'll have a good idea of your potential tenant's financial situation: do they have bad or no credit, high credit card debt, a lot of student loan or medical debt, or previous evictions? Student loans, medical debt, or limited credit might be explained and overlooked, but high credit card debt or past evictions are red flags.
Knowing if they'll pay their rent on time
With proper tenant screening, you'll talk to former landlord's, family or friends who can give you insight into whether your prospective tenant pays their bills on time. A background check will indicate if there are judgments for unpaid rent, while a history of chronic late payments on other bills can be an indication that they'll do the same to you.
Protect your property and neighbors
A thorough background check should include criminal records. Criminal convictions are not uncommon and some, like minor traffic violations, might be overlooked. Domestic violence, assault, theft, and other more significant crimes are red flags, however, as are sex offenders. Tenant screening ensures you avoid them.
Avoid future evictions
Evictions are lengthy and costly processes that are better avoided when possible. A background check will tell you if someone's been evicted before. This information will save you the time and expense of potentially removing them later.
Skip the "job jumpers."
"Job jumpers" are those people who go from job to job frequently. They might just change positions a lot, or they might move to a new town to follow new job opportunities. Either way, this makes them an unstable tenant for you, and potentially one that skips out on you.
Tenant screening is a simple, straightforward process that saves you major trouble in the future. You'll have better quality tenants and lower turnover. It may take a little longer to fill a vacancy, but the peace of mind is worth it.
Some people may feel uncomfortable with in depth tenant screening, but remember, the idea is to make extra income, not take on a bunch of headaches.