How landlords can confirm the credit reports of prospective tenants

As a residential property owner, it is important to know the kind of tenant that you are leasing your house to. This is because the person you give your home to will determine whether he/she will pay you the lease each month or will take care of the property as his/her own. By being an informed landlord, you will keep off from individuals that have had rental issues in the past. Read on for more information regarding the tenants’ credit reports.

Types of reports

The credit scores will enable you to determine whether one will be a good tenant or not. The kind of report that you get will depend on the agency that you work with. There are three credit bureaus where one can access credit reports. These are Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. Landlords cannot directly order for credit reports from these big bureaus. However, they can work with tenant screening firms or credit reporting agencies. Get a company that has been operational for many years and operates locally. The agency you choose should provide informative and clear reports.

Information required to access credit report

In order to access credit information, there are certain things that you will require. You must have the name of the prospective tenant, his/her address and Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) or Social Security number. Most of this information will be available on the rental application that is filled by the renter. The application stands as an authorization that the tenant has allowed you to run a credit check. A landlord should ensure that every applicant is notified of the rental history reports charges beforehand.

Information you will get in a credit report

A tenant’s credit report contains a lot of information that any potential landlord would wish to have. You will find out whether the individual has filed for insolvency before or has been arrested or convicted of any crime in different states. You will also get information about any evictions that the individual has had in the past. Additionally, you will find out whether the leaser has been delinquent or late in paying bills or rent, including vehicle and student loans. Information in the credit reports usually covers the previous seven to ten years.

Legal Issues

Landlords are legally free to look at the credit reports of prospective individuals and use this information when picking their tenants. However, the law dictates that you should not use this information to discriminate other tenants. For example, requesting credit reports from specific tenants and not from others. You should also avoid setting tough standards for leasing to individuals of an ethnic or racial minority. Any discrimination when leasing your property can land you into problems with the authorities.

There are privately owned credit reporting agencies that accumulate and sell information such as credit files regarding different consumers. This data is essential for landlords because they will get more information about a tenant before they lease the house to him/her. It is advisable to check the credit history of a tenant so that you know how accountable the person is when it comes to managing money.

Author Bio: Cindy Holmes, is a renowned property manager with several years of experience in the housing industry. Get information on rental history reports by checking My Rental History Report.

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