When To Write a Tenant Reference Letter?

5 Replies

My tenant’s lease expires July 31 and she is moving out. She’s asked me for a reference letter. 

When do I provide it to her? Now? So that she can use it to find a new place? Or once she’s moved out after I’ve done an inspection and verified no issues with my property? 

Thx. 

Hi @Marenda Bullock ! I recommend you ask your tenant why she needs a reference letter. Specifically, what does she intend to do with it?

When we are working to approve a tenant, we request a Verification of Rent from their current (and sometimes also previous) landlord. The VOR specifies when the lease started, the current rent, the tenant's 12-month payment history, and other info that sheds light on the kind of tenant they are.

Similarly, when our tenants move elsewhere, some (only some) of those landlords request a VOR from us, which we promptly provide.

However, at no point do we accept any documentation directly from a tenant as proof of their tenancy status, nor do we provide any directly to a tenant.

@Marenda Bullock

I disagree with the above posts. if the tenant has been in good standing and no issues, I would not have an issue writing a reference letter before so they could get a place. Something simple: "(Tenant Name) has been a tenant of 123 Main street from 1 Aug 2017 with a lease expiring 31 July 2019. (Tenant Name) has had no violations to this point and no late rent payments. Date the letter for todays date and hand it over.

Obviously if there are issues and they are leaving and you anticipate problems, things are different.