Credit Checks and Other Useful Tools for Landlords in Rogers, AR to Screen a Tenant

Credit Checks and Other Useful Tools for Landlords in Rogers, AR to Screen a Tenant

As a landlord in Rogers, AR, you may have noticed you're struggling to retain tenants lately. You're not alone -- Arkansas eviction rates keep going up.

The solution to this issue is simple: find better tenants. With a thorough tenant screening process, it will be far easier to sort the wheat from the chaff. This is particularly important when it comes to the background check.

Want to ensure your tenant background check reveals key information? Start by focusing on the following four categories.

Credit History

Your first step should be to assess an applicant's credit history. This allows you to secure tenants who are more likely to pay rent on time.

For best results, your applicant should have a credit score of 700 or above. That said, you should also look for red flags. Bankruptcies, late payments, and liens all indicate an inability to keep up with financial obligations.

Some applicants are hesitant to let landlords run a credit check on them. They think this qualifies as a hard inquiry, which can lower their credit score. Reassure them that all background checks register as soft inquiries.

Criminal History

Next, check if your applicant has felonies or misdemeanors on their record. Doing so is essential for ensuring tenant safety and security.

Keep in mind that Arkansas landlord-tenant laws don't allow you to ask your applicant if they were ever arrested. What you can do, however, is ask if they've been convicted of a crime.

When assessing an applicant's criminal history, use your judgment. A minor misdemeanor dating back five or ten years isn't much of a red flag. A streak of convictions, however, is a different story.

Employment History

Every rental application should include an employment history section. This is another solid way to ensure the stability of their rental payments.

While evaluating their work history, look for any gaps in employment. This suggests the applicant may struggle to hold down a job. You may also want to contact their previous employers to confirm the length of employment.

The applicant's employment history should also include proof of income. As a general rule, the tenant should have an income of at least three times your rent. If they can't reach that threshold, look elsewhere.

Rental History

The final step in the background check process is to look at their rental history. This is a good way to see if they're the right fit for your property.

Keep an eye out for broken leases, evictions, or complaints. To further evaluate their rental track record, ask for references from previous landlords. They can tell you whether they can maintain your property.

A lack of tenant history shouldn't be an instant disqualifier. A new tenant can still be a good one -- you simply need to focus on their other qualifications.

Tenant Background Check Made Easy

The bottom line: finding the perfect tenant isn't easy. If you want to avoid vacancies, you may need to compromise on some criteria listed above. That said, it's still up to you to choose which criteria that will be.

Need some help with running a tenant background check in Rogers, AR? At PMI Heritage, we design our background checks to fully protect our clients' interests!

Fill out this form and get in touch with us right away!