8 Things Landlords Look For in a Tenant

Good landlords take great care in selecting their tenants and may have a list of tangible and intangible requirements that they expect a prospective tenant to meet.
Madhu Vijayakumar
March 1, 2022
3 min read
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Long-time renters have all been through a phase where all rental homes they want always seem to be taken. Sometimes it is because of a high demand in rental homes. Good landlords take great care in selecting their tenants and may have a list of tangible and intangible requirements that they expect a prospective tenant to meet. Check out some of those expectations and set yourself apart.

Respectful of time

The first impression to make on a prospective property owner or manager is during the scheduled showing. Showing up reasonably ahead of time gets you on their good books right away. Showing up late without a heads-up or rescheduling at the last minute is a big put off and the landlord is already considering going ahead with other interested parties.

Polite and amiable personality

This seems unnecessary for a business relationship between a landlord and tenant. However, during the length of a tenancy, there will be many occasions where the landlord and tenant may need to work together to find solutions for problems that may arise regarding the property, be it new rules being implemented or informing tenants of a change in conditions or making renovations in the property. When a landlord feels an applicant is easy to work with, that is a point in your favor.

Forthcoming with information

A property owner will have a non-exhaustive list of questions for a prospective tenant to whom they would entrust their investment. They are just trying to understand as much about you and your lifestyle as possible. Refusing to provide information, being argumentative or challenging the questions may count against you.

Positive background and credit check

Though it can be argued that a low credit score is not a reliable indicator of a person’s financial situation, it has been a popular method of determining the rent payability of a prospective tenant. However, a positive background check may still trump a credit report when combined with a regular income.

Good references

One of the most important steps in tenant screening is the reference check. One good word from a previous landlord goes a long way in boosting the confidence of a property owner in renting their property to you. Make sure you maintain a good record of your past rental residences and landlord contact information.

Stable job

The employment history of an applicant is keenly scrutinized by property managers. An applicant with a long time stable job is considered trustworthy as there is an assurance of regular income and also may indicate that they may rent long-term. Frequent changes in jobs and unexplained gaps in between are considered serious negatives.

Timely responses

Getting approved for a rental property is never a single step process. The prospective landlord may have a lot of questions once they have screened your property, an information that needs clarification or a missing document. How quickly within reason you respond to them shows how easy it is to reach you in case of an emergency and how open you are for communication.

Ask questions

A very big indicator of a good tenant is when an applicant shows interest in the property and asks relevant questions about the property. Questions about the neighborhood and amenities show how serious you are about renting the property, while questions maintenance, upkeep show you care about the place you live.

There is no one right answer to identifying the ideal tenant, but the points above may give property owners a good idea of what a prospective tenant is going to be like. A strong application that impresses the landlord may very well be the first step in finding your dream home.

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Madhu Vijayakumar
March 1, 2022
3 min read
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