There have been over 83,000 eviction filings in Houston during the past year.
No landlord invests in a rental property to have to evict their tenants. Unfortunately, bad tenants are out there and these kinds of measures need to be taken in order to deal with them. Fortunately, there are preventative tactics you can take to avoid having delinquent tenants in the first place.
Tenant screening is something every landlord should do when renting out a unit. In today's post, we'll discuss the importance of a tenant criminal background check in Houston. If you want to keep your rentals profitable, keep reading and learn how to keep the worst tenants away.
The Importance of a Houston Tenant Criminal Background Check
A tenant background check will encompass many things, from financial history to criminal history. When it comes to a criminal background check, you're looking to avoid accepting tenants who might disrupt other tenants or perform illegal activity in your rental.
A criminal background check will unearth a full list of the applicant's offenses. The types of offenses that put people and property at risk are the ones you need to look out for-violent crimes, sexual crimes, theft, etc.
When you fail to do a criminal background check, you're leaving your property and neighbors vulnerable. A tenant with an extensive criminal history will put your reputation as a landlord at risk as well.
Texas Landlord-Tenant Laws
Before you perform a criminal background check, you need to receive consent from the applicant. It's illegal to run a background check of any kind without someone's written consent.
It's also important to gain an understanding of Fair Housing Laws in Texas. These laws protect tenants from discrimination based on race, color, national origin, religion, or gender. When it comes to criminal history, you're only allowed to deny tenancy if the applicant puts others at risk.
Other Tenant Screening Measures to Utilize
Criminal background isn't the only screening measure you should pay attention to. Just as important is your tenant's ability to pay rent. For that reason, checking credit and previous landlord references are essential tactics.
A credit check will tell you about a person's long-term financial health. An employer reference will tell you if the applicant is gainfully employed. Previous landlord references will tell you what an applicant is like as a tenant.
Combining all of these things will make it easier to select the right tenant for your unit. When you have a large pool of tenants, screening helps you narrow it down to a few of the very best.
How Houston Property Management Can Help
Tenant screening can be a lot of work. If you're worried about your ability to find great tenants or performing a tenant criminal background check on an applicant, property managers can help.
At Terra Residential Services, we'll perform thorough background checks on all applicants to ensure you get qualified tenants. To learn more about these, as well as our many other property management services, don't hesitate to contact us today.