When Tenants Go Sour: How to Avoid Bad Tenants

Here at Tenant File, we’re constantly stressing the importance of finding a tenant that is a perfect fit for your home. While there are certain steps you can take prior to renting out your home to them (check out our video on tenant screening here), can you guarantee that your tenant won’t go bad? Realistically, you can’t, so you need to be alert and keeping your eyes open for signs that your tenant may not be as good as they seem. Having a bad tenant can make the rental process immensely difficult and costly for you, so you need to make sure you don’t end up with one!

For starters, don’t rush the process of screening your tenant. It’s important to make sure that you have legitimate information that checks out. You should definitely require proof of employment from your tenant and verify it to make sure it’s not falsified. If you skip this step, you may end up with a tenant that you think is a high earning executive, when in reality they’re unemployed. Missed or late payments are also a huge red flag your tenant may be going bad; if they stop paying out of nowhere without speaking to you about any issues they might have, it may be time to have them move.

A huge thing that some tend to overlook is making sure everything is in writing. The lease contract needs to be sure to have every single aspect of the rental agreement being made in it, not just a general overview of the terms. If all the terms of the agreement are in writing, it’s clear to your tenant what they can and can’t do in your property. Having a fully stated agreement also makes it easier for you to point out certain terms your tenant is breaking and provide concrete reason to have them evicted.

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