How Do I Choose Between Tenants?

Some things in life are easy to choose from. While it may at first seem hard to choose which ice cream flavour to buy for dessert, really, it’s not that difficult; there’s no real risk at stake because, either way, you’re going to end up with a delicious treat and there won’t be any permanent effects if you do regret your choice. Choosing a tenant, on the other hand? Not quite the same.

Choosing between tenants can be a tough game. There may be a few really good applicants for your rental property which you simply can’t separate, and this makes it even more difficult. In this post, we aim to give you a few tips and point you in the right direction of which tenant to choose.

Do they have the right documents?

The documents provided within an applicant’s tenancy application, will assist you in choosing the right tenant.  Vital information provided within an application include proof of ID (drivers licence/passport), employment verification or a recent payslip, proof of address and personal/work references.  If a tenant has previously rented a property, then the most important reference is that from the previous landlord or agent.  The review of their current/previous occupancy will give you an indication of how your future tenancy will be.

Do they have the right income?

We’re not necessarily saying that the more money they make, the better your tenant will be. If your rental is reasonably affordable, then a billionaire won’t necessarily be a better tenant than your average Joe. But make sure that your tenant’s income seems appropriate for however much rent you’re charging. If it comes down to two great applicants, both with good reviews from previous landlords, but one applicant is more financially secure than the other, it may just be the deciding factor in which tenant to choose.

Do they have a good rental history?

A good rental history doesn’t just mean having one good review. Other aspects to consider include how often they have moved, the length of their tenancy, and their reason for moving. Ideally, you should choose a tenant who has a history of staying in one place for longer periods of time.

Do they have pets?

You might not have a problem with your tenant bringing in a pet puppy, kitty, gerbil, crocodile or any other animal – but if you do, it’s important to ask applicants about pets. Make it very clear to the tenants you’re choosing between what your stance on pets is.

More than one tenant on the lease?

Sometimes the choice is between two good applicants, but applicant one is a single person on the lease, and the other applicant is a student with their father or mother on the lease, or a couple applying for the same property. Generally, having more than one person on the lease is preferable, since if one person loses their job, or becomes ill, there is another who has agreed to pay the rent.

These are just a few ways that you can separate good tenants from bad tenants or choose between two amazing candidates. Don’t forget that personal instinct can play a big part in your decision too.

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