To find a good tenant, it helps to know what a good tenant actually is. Below are some qualities all good tenants have.
Find a good tenant isn’t easy. Even someone who looks good on paper may not be the best tenant. But, if you keep these few qualities in mind while showing properties and during the application process, you’ll have a good idea of what type of tenant the person you are dealing with will make.
Leasing your rental to a new tenant sometimes feels like a gamble, but it doesn’t have to be. You can reduce your risk of future tenant issues by knowing the qualities all good tenants have and looking for those in applicants as you show the property and review the application.
Just keep in mind that to avoid violating the Fair Housing Act – a costly mistake you never want to make – you will have to apply your application criteria equally to all applications. Also, make sure that the determining factors when you make your decision are measurable, such as the income-to-rent and credit score.
A good tenant is responsible.
Not only does a good tenant pay the rent and other bills on time, but he mows the grass, pulls the weeds, changes the filters, and takes care of the day-to-day maintenance issues that are his responsibility. He also alerts you to potential issues that require your attention, such as termite tubes in the laundry room.
Punctually is your first indication whether a potential tenant is responsible. Check his credit report, too. If he doesn’t pay his bills on time, his credit score will reflect it. Also, watch for judgments for uncollected rent and damages. A responsible tenant will pay his rent on time and in full, and of course, he won’t damage the property.
A good tenant is respectful.
If your tenant doesn’t respect you, you’re in for trouble. He will likely try to take advantage of you by paying late or asking for concession after concession. You can tell whether he’ll respect you after he’s your tenant by the way he treats you before he’s your tenant. Trust your instincts on this.
A good tenant can pay.
This is a no-brainer. If a tenant isn’t able to afford rent, you shouldn’t be surprised when he doesn’t pay the rent. A good rule of thumb is that the rent should not exceed 30 percent of the applicant’s income. In fact, you may want to make that one the written criteria for qualifying to rent the property.