Credit Checks and Other Useful Tools for Landlords in Greenville, SC to Screen a Tenant

Credit Checks and Other Useful Tools for Landlords in Greenville, SC to Screen a Tenant

In 2023, the vacancy rate for rental properties in South Carolina was around 10.3%. The vacancy rate tells you how many rental units are not occupied, and landlords monitor it.

When your vacancy rate increases, you might feel tempted to skip your tenant screenings to fill the units faster. This might help you fill the units, but it won't assist with finding the best tenants.

To find excellent tenants, you need a tenant background check for every applicant, and you can use various tools during your screening process.

Here are several things to know about your tenant screening process.

Tenant Credit Checks

A tenant background check is more than one step. Instead, it's a series of steps and often begins with a credit check.

A credit check reveals how well a person manages their money. A high credit score represents good money management, while a low one might indicate a person is not creditworthy.

Tenant screenings give you the information you need to determine if you should rent to someone. Without these, you would not have the information you need about a person.

You can run credit checks yourself. However, hiring a property manager is the better way to handle it.

In either case, create minimum credit score requirements and follow them. These standards help you avoid discrimination cases. For example, you could create a rule requiring a credit score of 650 for every tenant.

Other Screening Tools

Tenant screenings also consist of other forms of verification. First, screen a person's income and employment history to determine if they can afford to rent the unit in question.

Next, run a criminal background check to determine if the person has committed crimes. This report tells you if they have previous or pending criminal charges and the types of charges.

Finally, research a person's rental history to learn about their past landlords and eviction history.

Evaluating Screening Results

After performing these steps, you must evaluate the results. You should look for several things as you analyze the information, including some red flags:

  • Late payments
  • Evictions
  • Bankruptcies
  • Multiple addresses over a short span
  • Violent crimes
  • Lack of consistent job history

If you need help running or evaluating screenings, outsource it. Outsourcing simplifies the process and provides expert services.

Next Steps After Screening

Learning how to run and evaluate tenant screenings is vital in finding better tenants, but you should also:

  • Create protocol and guidelines for the criteria you use in choosing tenants
  • Make a legally compliant lease agreement
  • Follow all fair housing and landlord-tenant laws

These steps help you avoid legal issues.

Run a Tenant Background Check and More

Running a tenant background check consists of multiple steps. The best way to analyze every applicant is to evaluate several factors.

Do you need help with your tenant screenings? We can help.

PMI Accelerate is locally owned and operated in Greenville, SC. We focus on excellence in our services and can help with every aspect of your rental property business, including tenant screenings.

Get in touch with us to learn about how we can help you screen your tenants more efficiently.