What are your questions for screening tenants?

5 Replies

What have you learned to look out for when screening tenants?

What questions do you ask to figure out if they will be a good match, and what do you learn from their response?

I found that someone offering to make improvements is a red flag. It indicates they are trying too hard and probably come with lots of problems (even if they never try 'improving' anything.

Hi @Adam Vadnais , that's an interesting take on the improvements offer. I never thought about it that way! I don't think I've ever had someone offer though. 

I'm not sure what kind of question restrictions you may have there, but it could be worth asking if they have filed bankruptcy and if that bankruptcy has been closed (if not, they could potentially add you to their list and get free rent for however many months before you can file for stay of relief and evict.). 

We do not really ask questions to them. We give them our requirements and if they meet those, we have them view the property. We base our decision on their application, background and references. I have noticed that people lie to try to make themselves look better. 

I've got a list of 27 that use.  I don't use all every time, but it gives me the chance to cover any questionable areas thoroughly if I want to.

Message me if you want it. 

Yes, when they offer to make improvements it indicates they're trying to appeal to your emotions and that they may be submitting a lot of maintenance requests once they move in.

It's also a red flag when they offer to pay several months or the entire year up front. They may be enticing you to forego your normal screening routine in exchange for easy money.

A few other questions I like to ask:

1. What doe the "LOCO" on your neck tattoo mean?

2. Why is your mom helping her 37-year-old son find a rental?

3. Does your car run better without the hood?

4. When you said you wouldn't have any pets, were you forgetting the three Pit Bulls on your Instagram?

5. It's 8:30am. Why do you reek of alcohol?

6. You want to rent my $2,000 home with your three good friends from McDonalds that you've only known for two months? Are you stupid?