Does Your Rental Application Meet These 5 Key Areas?

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Does Your Rental Application Meet These 5 Key Areas?

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Your rental application safeguards your rental property. Alongside background screening, it’s one of the few things that helps you decide if an applicant should live amongst your rental’s community. While it certainly can’t tell you a particular resident-to-be’s future, as long as you cover 5 key areas in your rental application, you can at least get a hint as to what type of renter they might become.

Have You Asked for any Moving Information?

It’s crucial that your rental application cover all the aspects that involve why your applicant is moving. Knowing in-depth moving information is not only practical, but also clues you into their relationship with their previous residence or landlord. Questions targeting why they’re moving, the date they need to move in, and how many people that will be moving with them, should be on your application.

Learn their Previous History but be Wary of Criminal History

Another practical aspect in your rental application should be questions targeting your applicant’s previous history. This could be questions about prior evictions or their current rental policy. While you might instantly think to ask about an applicant’s criminal history as well, you should start preparing your rental application for when (or if) the ban-the-box legislation gains movement within tenant screening.

Currently, the ban-the-box movement aims to prohibit employers from asking about an applicant’s criminal history before extending a formal job offer. While this movement affects employment screening, it’s getting momentum in the rental housing world. In preparation, avoid direct questions about their criminal past on your application. Depend on your background screening report to uncover any major criminal charges or red flags.

Do They Have Their Financial Situation Sorted?

When it comes to employment verification, you should already have questions that address these standard rental application question topics. However, if you don’t, make sure your application addresses if they’re prepared to pay first and last month’s rent, and if they can afford the deposit (if required). It should also have a space where your applicant can record their income information.

Additional Factors For Your Rental Application

You can add additional questions based on concerns you have, but standard extra questions involve if they have any pets, how many vehicles they have, and if they own a water bed. If you add any questions make sure they all relate to the rental property and are justifiable, so as to not seem discriminatory.

Your Applicant’s References

How much you use personal references during the application process is up to you; however you should make sure to include a space for applicant’s employment and rental references. By performing verbal verifications of each of these references, you can determine if your applicant was truthful and if they have/had a good relationship with their company or previous landlord. If you hear anything that raises red flags, use your applicant’s background report to investigate further and justify your final decision.

Performing tenant screening alongside your rental application is important when deciding if an applicant is the right fit for your rental property. It not only helps you make the best possible decision, but it reassures your nondiscriminatory rental practices. With tenant screening beside your rental application (enhanced by these 5 key question areas), you’ll have quality tenants in no time.

What type of application questions do you think help you make the best rental decision? Do you have any unique questions you ask on your application? Tell us about it in the comment section below!

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2 Replies to “Does Your Rental Application Meet These 5 Key Areas?”

  1. We also check litigation history as an indicator of future behavior. Over the years we have noted a correlation between litigation history and excessive demands and problems as a tenant. We don’t use it as a matter of establishing credit but to determine litigiousness. Litigation is far more costly than someone skipping out on a couple months rent.

    1. Thank you for the feedback, Veronica. I agree that is a good indicator of how a potential tenant may respond to you in the future. We also encourage researching eviction filings because as often as evictions never reach a judgment, it paints a vivid picture when an applicant has had multiple filings against them.

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2 Replies to “Does Your Rental Application Meet These 5 Key Areas?”

  1. We also check litigation history as an indicator of future behavior. Over the years we have noted a correlation between litigation history and excessive demands and problems as a tenant. We don’t use it as a matter of establishing credit but to determine litigiousness. Litigation is far more costly than someone skipping out on a couple months rent.

    1. Thank you for the feedback, Veronica. I agree that is a good indicator of how a potential tenant may respond to you in the future. We also encourage researching eviction filings because as often as evictions never reach a judgment, it paints a vivid picture when an applicant has had multiple filings against them.

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Get Started with ApplyConnect!

The nation’s most trusted tenant screening for real estate agents, landlords, and property managers. No cost background checks available 24/7.

©2018 ApplyConnect. All rights reserved

ApplyConnect marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of applyconnect.com. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.