How We Screen Your Rental Applicants

How We Screen Your Rental Applicants

If you have ever had a bad tenant, you'll know the stress and hassle that comes with it. It takes lots of legal support and time to remove that tenant - and there is the cost of getting that done.

That's why all landlords should have a comprehensive tenant screening process. Here is how we screen your rental applications and what we do as part of a tenant criminal background check in Los Angeles.

The Initial Process

Tenant background checks can only happen with the correct information. So the first step, once a potential tenant chooses a property, is to get all the details from that tenant.

Background checks should follow the law, so a property manager must obtain consent from the potential tenant. Then, the tenant will complete information with relevant personal details like name, date of birth, and address.

Checking Records

A criminal background check is comprehensive.

That's important because you want reassurance that you are handing over the keys to your property to someone you can trust. So, the background check looks at criminal databases locally, at a state level, and nationally.

It will also flag up any ongoing legal issues. The checks will also cover terror watch lists and sex offender registries.

Interpreting Records

When information comes back from criminal databases, our team's next step is to interpret it so landlords can make an informed decision.

Criminal records don't always prevent someone from being a suitable tenant, so it's essential to get the right facts. That includes things like the nature and severity of the crime.

Another factor that will often shape the decision is how recent the crime was. It's vital to balance the safety of other residents and the landlord with the fairness to a potential tenant.

Using Additional Screening Tools

It's important to remember that criminal background checks are only part of a tenant screening process.

Before deciding on a potential tenant, we will look at a broader range of information, including a credit check.

The team will also get information on the tenant's employment status, including income history, to ensure they will reliably pay the rent. The team will also seek character references, such as information from previous landlords.

Compliance Issues

After screening tenants and deciding whether to offer them the property, one more step must be completed before they can sign the rental agreement.

The team will check compliance with Fair Housing laws to ensure the decision is fair and non-discriminatory and protects the landlord from any future legal issues.

Communicating Decisions to Potential Tenants

The final step is to communicate the decision to a potential tenant. If the screening results in a rejection, this must be communicated sensitively and transparently.

It's also a time to allow potential tenants to dispute the screening or inspect the information for possible inaccuracies.

Running a Tenant Criminal Background Check

It's easy to understand why a tenant criminal background check is a non-negotiable part of screening your LA property. But equally, it's vital to get it right. Using a trusted team who understands the process is a wise idea.

Why not take the next step now? Our experienced property management team at PMI Los Angeles has in-depth knowledge of tenant laws and a comprehensive screening process. Find out more here.