Choosing the best tenant for your investment property can be the difference between loss or profit. As a landlord you want tenants that treat your property like their own. So where do you begin?
Advertise Your Property Wisely
You may not realize it, but advertising is the first step to screening potential tenants. Today landlords have many different ways to get the word out about their property. While putting a rental sign in your window, listing with a realtor, and adding the vacancy to sites like Zillow and Craigslist might be the first thing that comes to mind, don’t overlook the value of social media.
Sites like Twitter and Facebook are a great way to advertise to potential tenants. There’s probably a page on Facebook for landlords in your area to advertise their rentals. Also, don’t overlook the obvious. Word of mouth, print ads, and advertising on bulletin boards have filled rentals. But remember to choose wisely where you advertise. A bulletin board in a coffee shop near a college will attract a different tenant than one in a community center in a stable neighborhood.
Screen Your Tenants Carefully
So your advertising produced a list of prospects. Now it’s time to screen your potential tenants. Many landlords don’t want to offend by asking personal questions, but this isn’t about discrimination. Since you must adhere to the Federal Fair Housing Rules, it’s about protecting your investment. Don’t be afraid to ask hard questions when interviewing. In the very least, conduct a criminal background check verifying the prospect’s name and date of birth with a valid i.d. In addition, run a credit check and verify their income. By taking care of these issues up front, you’ll be able to quickly disqualify the more irresponsible tenants from the more trustworthy ones.
Having to evict a tenant can be aggravating and costly, but with carefully planned advertising and screening it can be prevented. Taking the time to do things properly yourself or by hiring a property management company will get you one step closer to finding the best tenant for your investment property. Call Legacy Properties-PM @ 720.989.1996 or please contact us.