Being a property owner does have its challenges, not the least of which is making sure your tenants pay their rent on time. As this may affect your financial status, it is worth the time and effort to make sure you get as honest and reliable a tenant as you can.
Not all tenants are the same way, however, so here are some tips on how to reduce the possibility of getting bad tenants.
Do not rely on phone calls
Do not depend on a phone call to give you a good idea of how the applicant is in person. Do not rely on chats, text messages or even a check of their Facebook, for that matter. The best way to gauge a person’s qualities is by knowing them face to face.
Use the phone and other technology as a means to screen, but meet the applicants you have on your shortlist. If you must concede to one technology, however, a Skype video conversation should be it. It is the next best thing to being there.
Do a good background check
Checking their social media accounts like Facebook and Twitter may give you an idea as to who they are, but you should go beyond those because people tend to show only their best on social media. Ask for references from their previous property owners; call them and ask about the applicant.
If you fail anyway
Even if you do succeed in doing all of those background and personality checks, it does not mean you will always find the perfect tenants. Some may be able to put up a good front or fall on hard times while they are your tenants. This might force them to run if they are out of money to pay you.
If this happens, you should have a backup plan. Having a company that specialises in commercial rent arrears recovery on your phonebook is a good idea.
You may not always land a good tenant, but that does not mean you should give up on trying. Do not be lazy in vetting tenants; it could save you from a lot of grief in the long term or the near future.