Applying to multiple rental properties has recently become that much easier for prospective tenants searching for their next home. While still a relatively new concept in the rental housing market, the emergence of reusable tenant screening reports (commonly referred to as “portable” reports) under California’s Assembly Bill 2559 and other similar laws enables tenants to apply to rental properties that have opted in to accept portable reports when applying to multiple properties at once.
The report includes the same essential elements required for adequate tenant screening, such as credit history, eviction history, criminal background checks, and rental history. Landlords may still conduct their own individual screenings if desired, but they cannot require the tenant to pay an additional fee to procure another report if they already have a valid reusable report. This legislation adds an extra layer of security and flexibility for tenants, making these reports even more beneficial to the renter.
While not a universal requirement quite yet, portable reports are gradually becoming more of an essential component of the tenant screening process as more cities and states move to institute laws mandating their implementation, such as in Colorado under House Bill 1099. This trend still varies, however, as some states do not require landlords to accept a reusable report. Portable reports are considered optional pending the property owners’ discretion in multiple states and cities, such as Illinois under HB3062 and the rest of the state of California (with the exception of the city of West Hollywood, California, where portable reports are actually required). States that proposed the same type of law but failed include Maryland under House Bill 1293 and Maine under LD690.
ApplyConnect has also been ahead of the curve with this trend.
Implemented in 2020, ApplyConnect’s “Apply Three” option gives applicants the ability to purchase their credit and background screening report to share it with up to three different properties within a month of their purchase for only $39.95. While this option has minimal impact on the ApplyConnect experience for landlords and real estate agents, it can tremendously benefit rental applicants by saving them money and time in a competitive housing market. Property owners and operators have access to see the applicant’s credit report and background check, and applicants can be that much more at ease while trying to find a new home.