Bad tenants often cause headaches to landlords and property owners or managers. These problems can lead to financial losses, damaged property, and even legal disputes.
To avoid such situations, it’s crucial to be aware of certain red flags indicating a problematic tenant. Whether you’re a seasoned landlord or a novice property owner, this list of five red flags can help you identify potentially troublesome tenants and reduce risks. Aside from the signs, you’ll learn how to get rid of bad tenants to protect your property investment. Read on to get started:
5 Signs Of Troublesome Tenants
When looking for tenants, keep an eye out for the following signs that may indicate potential problems:
1. Poor Rental History
One of the key red flags to watch out for is poor rental history. Consider a situation where a prospective tenant has a history of constantly changing residences or has been evicted multiple times. This is a warning sign that they may not be dependable when fulfilling their legal obligations.
2. Frequent Job Changes
Another major red flag to be wary of is a tenant who frequently changes jobs. For instance, if a prospective tenant’s employment history shows a track record of job hopping or has a high turnover rate, they may struggle to maintain a steady income to afford rent, leading to late or missed rental payments.
3. Incomplete Application
It’s important to pay attention to the completeness and accuracy of the information a potential tenant provides on their application. Suppose a tenant’s application has missing or conflicting details, such as different addresses, employment dates, or contact information on different forms. In this case, concerns about the applicant’s honesty and reliability arise, which could indicate that they have something to hide about their background. Perhaps they have a bad credit history or a criminal record that they don’t want to disclose, which might affect their ability to be a responsible tenant.
4. Pet-Related Issues
If your property isn’t pet-friendly, paying attention to whether prospective tenants have pets and their history with pets is essential. The last thing you want is to rent to someone with a history of damaging property or causing disturbances with their pets.
For instance, let’s say a tenant tries to sneak a pet into the rental unit despite being informed that pets aren’t allowed on the premises. This issue could lead to foul odors in the rental unit or damage to the property due to scratching furniture or soiling carpets, which might make it challenging to keep your best tenants.
5. Poor Communication Skills
Lastly, if the potential tenant is often unresponsive during the application process, it can be a potential red flag. For example, if a prospective tenant takes a long time to respond to your inquiries or fails to provide the necessary documents and information promptly, it could lead to difficulties addressing concerns or maintenance requests during their tenancy.
How To Avoid Problematic Tenants
Now that you know the red flags to watch out for, you can take steps to prevent the headaches and potential problems that troublesome occupants can bring. These include the following:
- Screen Tenants Thoroughly: Conducting a comprehensive background check, including employment verification and contacting previous landlords, can provide you with a better understanding of a prospective tenant’s rental history and financial stability.
- Set Clear Expectations: Communicate your rental policies, rules, and expectations to potential tenants. Ensure they understand and agree to these terms before signing the lease agreement.
- Use A Thorough Application Process: Require potential tenants to complete a detailed application that provides all the necessary information. Verify the accuracy of the information provided and be on the lookout for any inconsistencies.
- Trust Your Instincts: Trust your instincts if something feels off about a potential tenant during the screening process or while interacting with them. It’s better to decline a potentially problematic tenant than to deal with the consequences later.
- Get Everything In Writing: Have a well-drafted lease agreement that covers all the important details and protects your interests as a landlord. Make sure tenants understand and sign the agreement before occupying the property.
- Be Responsive And Proactive: Establish good communication with your tenants. Address any concerns or maintenance requests promptly to avoid any misunderstandings or dissatisfaction.
By implementing these strategies, you can minimize the risk of dealing with troublesome renters.
Keeping Bad Tenants Away From Your Property
Recognizing the red flags associated with bad tenants is essential for anyone caring for a rental property. But by paying attention to warning signs like poor rental history and frequent job changes, you could take proactive steps to help avoid the headaches and financial losses that come with bad tenants.
Remember that in property management, prevention is always better than cure. So, be diligent in your tenant screening process, and you’ll be on the right track to keeping problematic tenants away from your lease unit.