The last thing you want is to be missing your mortgage payments because your tenants are always late on their rent. This makes tenant vetting an important cog in the machine. A good tenant reference can be invaluable, but one thing that is just as important is your own opinion: things you notice from meeting an individual in person and from your own interactions with them.
Here are some potential signs to watch out for.
This one is a simple comparison to make – if someone does not mind being late to their first meeting with you, they may not be too worried about being late with the rent. Of course, it’s not an exact science and they may be able to provide a completely reasonable explanation, but we’re talking about those who provide no apology, explanation or sign of remorse.
We get it, everyone loves a bargain, and everyone wants a little extra for nothing. And there is nothing wrong with a potential tenant bartering on price a little. But if you feel the haggling goes a little too far, it could be a sign that the tenant doesn’t value the property as much as you do and may not treat it with as much care as you might like.
Again, there is nothing wrong with this in moderation. Things happen that can’t be helped, and some people may need to rearrange their viewing. But multiple rescheduling could be a sign that either the tenant is not all that keen on your property, or that they feel fine about “rescheduling” your rent due date every now and then.
Offering to pay the full term
This may seem strange at first glance, and with good reason. You’d normally think, “Happy days, guaranteed no arrears for 12 months”. But be wary, this could lull you into a false sense of security. If said tenant wants to renew, you will need to remember to check that they can afford the rent going forward. Paying the full term in advance does not necessarily mean they have ongoing income to cover the rent for an extended period.
In the same way that a tenant wants their landlord easily contactable in case something goes wrong, you want to know that you can get in touch with your tenant and they are going to be receptive. You may just need to arrange an inspection, or worst case you are chasing late rent – but if you couldn’t get hold of them when they wanted something from you (your property), will you really be able to reach them when you want something from them?
These factors do not necessarily mean that an applicant is not going to be a suitable tenant, and will not be evaluated in a professional tenant reference; however, they may just be some things that you’ll want to look out for. And if someone ticks all the above boxes, you might want to think about looking elsewhere.
Why not arrange a free consultation with a member of our Landlord support team?
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