what is the rule of thumb when you have a primary applicant who completes the rental application and their significant other who will also occupy the property refuses to complete application and credit and background? How do we protect our interest and avoid any liabilities as landlords. That includes the dreaded eviction process?
"Sorry, we cannot process incomplete applications. All adult occupants must complete the application and screening process"
If they continue to refuse just move on, they obviously have something to hide.
If they're legally married, one person can be the financially responsible party & carry the rent payment (for example: husband goes to work & wife stays home). If they are not legally married or in a union not recognized in your state, DE-nied. All tenants living on the property over 18 have to qualify (unless they're somebody's kid). That's how I & many other landlords do it; it's a measure of security for you to insure you get paid. Nothing legal, of course - you're welcome to rent to them with or without the background info. Me? I'd pass.
@Gayvonne Giwa - "Next".
They are trying to hide something. If you rented to these people, they have already established who the boss is, and it's not you.
I agree with all above....they have something to hide. It is not worth the "headache"
Move on to the next.
I had a tenant who applied on her own to rent a condo of ours, and was approved by me and the condo association. After she moved in with her baby, she asked if her boyfriend could be added to the lease. Said he wasn't really going to live there full time as he traveled for business. I said I would process his application as if he were a new tenant - and there was an eviction on his background check. Which I'm sure she knew about when applying by herself in the first place. Denied.
Whether he unofficially moved in later, I don't know, as we sold the place.
I don't think in terms of "primary applicant" and others as something else. I think in terms of all adults (age 18 and older) who will be occupying the property will be tenants who are jointly and severally liable to uphold the terms of the rental agreement.
All must apply and must meet my minimum criteria to rent. I base my income requirements on household income, not individual income. They will be either approved or denied based on my findings. If they have some bad history I will decide if an extra security deposit is necessary to cover my risk.
Sometimes people balk at the application process because of bad history. Some do so because they don't want to pay the application fee. At this point all you really know is you asked them to fulfill your application requirements and they are choosing not to. Deny and move on to the next applicant.
On another note, there are tenants who move in under false pretenses, such as they always intended to have their boyfriend or cat live there, but apply as if this were not the case. They try to sneak in an unauthorized occupant or an unauthorized animal later. Be sure your rental agreement covers such a situation. We automatically charge a $50 fee for each such occurrence and require immediate removal of the unauthorized person or animal. We also reserve the right to terminate the tenancy. We operate with MTM rental agreements so it is easy to do so.
We have a procedure to allow for a change in the make-up of a household. It is not uncommon over the course of time for one person to move-out or for another to want to move-in. We require our tenants to notify us in advance if they plan to change the make-up of the household. For the one moving out, we provide for a release of liability (but the entire security deposit stays with the unit until all occupants vacate). For the one moving in, they must complete our application process and we may increase the security deposit if we deem it necessary.
Hope this helps!
I would not waste anymore time on them. Move on to the next completed application.
Definitely move on. It's temping to want to bend the rules because you want that renter moved in, but in the long run you want the best tenant you can get. If they're not willing to do what they need to now, just imagine what trouble you're in for down the line.
that is the next best thing to getting the perfect tenant, an easy NO.
Free eBook from BiggerPockets!
Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!
- Actionable advice for getting started,
- Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
- Learn how to get started with or without money,
- Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
- And a LOT more.
Sign up below to download the eBook for FREE today!
We hate spam just as much as you
Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community
Basic membership is free, forever.