Tenant screening without criminal background

3 Replies

Would you do a tenant screening that just includes credit report, but not criminal background?  Was looking a big 3 credit bureau that offers this (credit check but no criminal background).

I would want to do some sort of criminal background check.  Background checks are cheap $25.  You are essentially going into business with someone so it is always best to know who it is you are working with.   

I believe that the criminal check is more important than the credit check. Everyone has bad credit these days. If it was good, they would be buying instead of renting.

Originally posted by @Justin Yung :

Would you do a tenant screening that just includes credit report, but not criminal background?  Was looking a big 3 credit bureau that offers this (credit check but no criminal background).

NO, you absolutely must check criminal. Your background check should include rental history, income history, credit history and legal history. Do not skip legal history (felonies, misdemeanors and court history). Guess where all of those evictions and monetary judgements show up? Not to mention the assaults, burglaries, drug possession/manufacture/dealing, and sex offenses. Get a full service agency to do all four areas, or outsource the credit and legal, then do the rental and income checks yourself. That's how we do it. You can do better for finding a company to service your needs. There is even one linked to Bigger Pockets under the Resources tab - select Tenant Screening. We use a company local to us. We like to get the full report and interpret it ourselves, instead of a scaled down version where someone else has reviewed the data and only give you their recommendation. Ask around your local REI network to see with whom others do business. Ask the tenant screening companies for a clear description of what they provide. Shop around to get what you need at a fair price. Good luck!

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