Having trouble finding QUALIFIED tenants in Arlington TX

11 Replies

I am currently trying to lease a property for the first time in Arlington, Texas and am experiencing frustration in finding a QUALIFIED tenant for my SFH. I feel that the rent, security deposit and other qualification requirements are all in line with the surrounding market, and there has been quite a lot of interest in the house. I've had many showings and even more phone calls. The biggest problem that I realized that these 'prospectives' had was with my credit score requirement (at least 640). These are my current requirements:

- $1395/month rent (average for the market)

-$1500 security deposit

-$50 application fee

-$250 non-refundable pet deposit (max 2 pets)

-minimum 640 credit score (the killer as it seems)

I have even tried offering those with lower credit scores the opportunity to lease with a higher monthly rent and/or higher security deposit but can't get anyone to even turn in an application (wasting lots of paper at this time).

I would be concerned as opposed to frustrated if there was no interest, but with the activity the past month (I've been trying for a month), I know that there are renters out there.

As I have indicated, I think the credit score issue is the speed hump, but I could be wrong. The house is not in any way a dump, it is a very nice 80's build 3/2/2 in a nice quiet neighborhood. Just can't figure out what I need to do to reel a tenant in! Any advice or feedback will be appreciated as this is the first time having to find a tenant (my first house was an inherited tenant).

You want a tenant in Arlington, TX? They are quite easy to find on Craigslist, Zillow, use Airbnb as free advertisement with a 30 night minim stay, or get with a realtor to post it for you but my personal suggest is to throw some furniture in there and rent it out for $4000 - $5000/mo using Airbnb or corporate rental. Arlington is a hot spot for Airbnb. Turn your place into a cash cow real quick in that area.

Thanks Myka. I was actually trying to figure out what to do about the credit score problem but your mention of Airbnb sounds intriguing.

Well I used to live very close to Arlington and can tell you that for that rent and security deposit most people who can afford that probably just buy a house.

I’d do Airbnb, you’d probably make a lot of money doing that

Yeah if you're buying in Arlington you could make some serious cash with Airbnb. Also you can put it on a corporate job board and get a tenant rather quickly if it was furnished. @Steven C. Suarez you might know where to find some good Arlington tenants.

I wish I knew where to find good renters. The ones I got found me when I became a landlord for the first time. They pay every month (eventually) it’s gotten better now. I guess if you lower your standards, rent, deposit, credit score, etc. You’ll surely get someone in. But then your risking getting bad tenants. I’d definitely recommend doing a month to month contract, easier to kick them out if they suck. The Airbnb option is good, be prepared to spend some money initially by furnishing the place. Plus you’ll still have to pay electricity, gas, water, internet, cable etc. every month, plus cater to guests and keep the place clean and yard mowed. Not exactly passive income, but can be lucrative if your up to put in the work! Me and Myka have a podcast called Live Let Thrive and we discuss all of the ins and outs of Airbnb and the share-conomy. Look us up and good luck on your journey!! :) 

@John Park - depending on where you are in Arlington, your rent amount sounds in line (zip code or sq ft would be helpful to be sure).  We charge $350 non-refundable pet fee per dog (no cats) up to two dogs (plus $10 per month pet rent).  Our leasing agent charges a $45 app fee.  So far so good.

Concerning the security deposit, we always do rent + $50.  So in your case, $1,445.  Not much lower, but may make a difference for some folks.  Of course, if we do get apps where the credit score is low or has dings that we don't like, we will increase the security deposit (not the rent).  BUT we always frame it as follows:  let's say we double the deposit from $1500 to $3000, we let them know we are not interested in just sitting on their cash, and we write into the lease the following carrot: if they pay on time the 1st 6 months of the lease, then we refund 50% of that extra deposit (e.g. $750), if they pay on time the next 6 months, we refund the 2nd 50%.  We are typically doing 2-year leases in this scenario.  This has worked very well for us, trains the tenants to pay on time at the start and makes us look good since we are paying them cash from time to time.

We will look below a 640 credit score by the way.  No recent bankruptcies or evictions.  

I can recommend a great realtor that offices down in Arlington - we have used her for a ton of lease ups and she typically has residual leads from other houses for a quick turn around. PM me if interested, or call the number below.

Andy

I'll look the podcast up Myka and Steven.

Thanks Andy. I'll keep your advice handy. If I continue to have trouble finding a tenant, I'll contact you for sure.

You bet - keep in mind that we are in a slower period anyhow this time of year.  Thanksgiving and Christmas can really be a drag on lease ups.

Originally posted by @John Park :

I am currently trying to lease a property for the first time in Arlington, Texas and am experiencing frustration in finding a QUALIFIED tenant for my SFH. I feel that the rent, security deposit and other qualification requirements are all in line with the surrounding market, and there has been quite a lot of interest in the house. I've had many showings and even more phone calls. The biggest problem that I realized that these 'prospectives' had was with my credit score requirement (at least 640). These are my current requirements:

- $1395/month rent (average for the market)

-$1500 security deposit

-$50 application fee

-$250 non-refundable pet deposit (max 2 pets)

-minimum 640 credit score (the killer as it seems)

I have even tried offering those with lower credit scores the opportunity to lease with a higher monthly rent and/or higher security deposit but can't get anyone to even turn in an application (wasting lots of paper at this time).

I would be concerned as opposed to frustrated if there was no interest, but with the activity the past month (I've been trying for a month), I know that there are renters out there.

As I have indicated, I think the credit score issue is the speed hump, but I could be wrong. The house is not in any way a dump, it is a very nice 80's build 3/2/2 in a nice quiet neighborhood. Just can't figure out what I need to do to reel a tenant in! Any advice or feedback will be appreciated as this is the first time having to find a tenant (my first house was an inherited tenant).

 Its always easier to find a tenant in the Spring.  We typically can rent for 5-10%/month more with spring rentals.

Personally I wouldnt get desperate and change your rental criteria.  I would rather drop the price $50-100/month than to lower the credit scores and end up with the cost of a couple of months of no rent at all, the cost of a lawyer and court costs and eviction...oh and then find out your place was damaged.

I would look closely at the rent and drop it until its rented, or sit on it until you find the right tenant.  Its short term pain, but honestly every time my wife and I have settled on a tenant we didnt feel good about, we have gotten burned.  Be patient.

Thanks Bart Hedgecock

So do you feel that the monthly rent amount is the determining factor in not having a tenant yet? As I said, there has been and continues to be quite a lot of interest in the house, but either the prospective tenant has a self-admitted low credit score and/or other issues, and the ones that seem qualified have passed on the house. I have had quite a few showings and I have seen advice to try and make them fill the application out right then and there, but I can't seem to bring myself to be that pushy. Insofar as waiting, that's what I am prepared to do at this juncture, but being new to the landlording gig it is making me have a, should I say, more realistic view on landlording. Basically, I thought that I would have a tenant by now. That being said, I guess to point of my initial inquiry to your reply is: Is the monthly rent the factor that is holding me back as opposed to the credit score issue in your opinion?

@Andy Webb can you please PM me the realtor Info please? Does your realtor do rentals

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