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Property Management Guru Series – Episode 1 – Screening Applicants 

Michael here, once again with Real Property Management. You may hear and see some work going on behind me at this property. This is a property that we just recently took over from another property management company that was shut down by law enforcement for being a methamphetamine house. This is a problem that we are seeing more and more in our industry. Today I’d like to talk to you just a little bit about how to better screen potential tenants and applicants, to be able to avoid problems just like this. We see this so often, in properties where owners choose to manage it themselves. Where they just go off of their gut feel for a potential tenant. Rather than actually pulling credit and criminal and doing the background checks that are necessary before they approve an application. This is the number one way to avoid potential problems like this. Here’s a few suggestions on what you should look for to be able to avoid problems just like this. Number one is credit. Everybody understands the importance of looking at someone’s credit, but there’s way too much emphasis placed on the credit score versus the everything else in their background and history. There are so many other things that way way more important when considering tenants and being able to avoid problems just like home. One of those things is their references, and residential history. In our books that’s almost the number one thing when considering a tenant, is what was their residential history like. Did they pay their rent on time?Would that landlord rent to that renter again? Did they get their security deposit back? All these questions incredibly important in determining whether somebody is going to take care of your property. Next one is nation wide criminal search. It’s obviously much cheaper just to do a state wide search, and a nationwide search is absolutely what you must pull for the property. Many people who are participating in illegal activity just simply move from state to state and avoid being detected through the credit and criminal searches that are just done on the local level.