Re: problem running a credit check on a tenant - Posted by Frank Chin
Posted by Frank Chin on March 28, 2010 at 15:42:00:
I used ATS (American Tenant Screening) for about 20 years, since screening services came on the scene. About 3 to 5 years ago, they requested I fill out an application, submit bank accounts, other documents, along with a fee. They also mentioned about coming by to check out the office. I sent everything in, I don’t recall anyone coming to take photos, and I get to pay a $25.00 maintenance fee each year after if I don’t order reports.
But I have a registered service in the event I need a report.
For a number of years, I had people coming in with copies of their own reports. However, I sometimes wonder about the ingenuity of people to make reports up, so I take their copy, and still order my own.
On the scale of inconveniences, I see that if I require documentation of tenants, I got nothing to hide myself either. Compared to RE taxes, insurance, repairs, the documentation and maintenance fee is just a part of doing business, and minor by comparison.
On several occasions, I had pulled credit reports cleaned up by “credit repair services”, and by hook an crook, I had tenants admit their credit was bad. People have guilty consciences, and one case, I just said “I have some questions about your credit report”, and the tenant blurted out “I thought everything was cleaned up”.
If I’m going to be a landlord in the long run, I would have a screening service at the ready, and often I find people surprised to hear a small LL running a report, and come clean with me before I run it, such as “I was bankrupt 2 years ago, would that turn up”??.
I would then say “want to tell me about it”??