Tips for Choosing the Right Tenant for your Rental Property

Landlords can end up having a few tenants to choose from, particularly in high-demand areas and if supply is slow.

Below is everything you need to know to choose the right tenants.

Picking the right tenant depends on many factors, like; the date they can move in, if they can pay upfront, and whether your gut tells you they’ll look after the rental.

Finding a long-term tenant who pays their rent on time and looks after the property as their own is a priority for most landlords.

A comprehensive reference check will help you. Once complete, you’ll need to decide from the tenants who passed the reference check on who's the best fit.

What is screening?

A landlord will carry out the tenant screening to evaluate applications.

A reference check is the first part of the screening, but there are several other things landlords can do to make sure they pick the right tenant.

Why should you screen tenants?

Screening enables you to make an informed decision about any prospective tenants and should mean the property is looked after and rent payments are received on time

If you rent a property after an in-depth screening process, you’re likely to end up with a long-term and hassle-free tenancy and reduce the likelihood of a dispute.

How to choose? Do your homework.

Screening will provide you with all the key initial information you need.

Doing additional checks yourself can give you a better picture of the tenant and if they suit what you’re looking for.

You could consider making your own landlord tenant checklist to find out information. Think about what you’d like to know about a prospective tenant – do they smoke? Do they have pets?  

It can help you to make a shortlist of prospective tenants and help with the final decision too.

Meeting tenants

It's easy to think that you don’t need to worry about meeting tenants if they pass all the checks. However, meeting in person should give you a good indication as to whether you’ll be able to establish a positive relationship.

Both landlord and tenant will have the chance to ask questions and it will enable you to make sure what’s said is the same as what was stated on the application and checks.

The additional exploration can assist with finding a dependable long-term tenant.

It’s important to remember when meeting with and choosing a tenant that rules are in place to stop discrimination against people’s gender, age, sexuality, or disability.

Once you have a tenant, you’ll also need to meet a variety of compliance obligations, for instance —the Landlord and Tenant Act.

How to choose your tenants?

If you’re struggling to pick between a couple of tenants, there are certain factors to consider.

How long are they looking to rent for? One tenant could be looking to rent for a longer time period while the other might want to move in sooner.

The tenant you choose depends on individual circumstances as well as your requirements.

Can they pay in advance?

Although you don’t want to start a bidding contest or try to get tenants to offer more than they are able to afford, some renters may be able to pay a little more.

If a tenant’s determined to secure your property they might offer to pay a bulk upfront. This removes the risk of arrears and means the tenant is financially tied to the property for a specific amount of time.

Will my property be looked after?

If you’re finding it difficult to choose between tenants, look at the information provided. It should give you an idea of whether they’ll look after the property.

References will help give you an understanding of how prospective tenants have treated properties they’ve lived in before.

When you speak in person, they may say how they will treat the property. For example, they may say they are a keen gardener and know how to maintain outdoor space or they are able to do basic maintenance on the property, this could save you time and cut down your costs.

Don’t rush and follow your instinct

You’ll have the key details you need from the references, but further research, meeting in person, and looking at what makes them stand out can help with the important final decision.

At the final screening stage, make sure you take your time and trust your instinct. If you think you could have a good rapport with one applicant in particular, and that they’ll treat your property with respect and pay on time, they are probably the right tenant.

Need help with your rental property?

Whatever your situation, Park & Bailey Lettings is dedicated to providing a seamless service to give you peace of mind.

There are three levels of service we offer, these are Let Only, Rent & Collect, and Managed.

Please contact our office HERE for more details.