Jenifer Kynor, Tenant Screening, Landlording, Marketing (TurboTenant)

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Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula
House Match Inc - Poway, CA
Excellent Sales and Property Management

I have learned not to judge too much on appearance. i let the numbers do the talking (credit and income).  Ive had some applicants that appear very cleancut, dressed nice, and they had 460 credit.  (Thats pretty much as bad as I've seen)   and one that came from the beach all scruffy and barefoot- ended up being a CEO who bought a house from me a few years later.

Sep 24, 2017 09:24 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor e-Pro, CRS, RCS-D, Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

I meet them in-person; the gut check rarely fails me when compiled with 2 previous landlord references, credit, eviction history and BG checks.

The car thing ain't true, my car is immaculate because clients see it, my house, not so much...we don't have many people over.

Sep 24, 2017 09:04 AM
Susie Kay
Ultima Real Estate - Plano, TX
North Dallas Specialist

I ask why they are leaving their current rental.  Also when asking the landlord for references, I ask whether he/she will lease to this person again, why or why not, how's the condition of the home when they left.  When I showed the property, I got the chance to meet them.

Sep 24, 2017 09:31 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Meeting them in person for a discussion helps, and getting  a written application can tell you a lot. No guarantees of course. Checking the rental references with some pointed questions can help.

Sep 24, 2017 10:50 AM
Kevin J. May
Florida Supreme Realty - Hobe Sound, FL
Serving the Treasure & Paradise Coasts of Florida

I haven't actually counted but I believe I have a couple thousand leases under my belt and have found no reliable method to assure peace of mind when it comes to tenants. A prior landlord, copies of their utilty bills and a credit report will get you to 90% of what you should know but that elusive 10% can make or break you. A 10 minute face to face interview at your office is where it begins!  

Sep 24, 2017 10:37 AM
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
The right Charlotte REALTOR!

You have some great answers, Jenifer Kynor and I really have nothing to add to Thomas J. Nelson, Realtor,CRS,e-Pro and Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula's excellent advice!  

Sep 24, 2017 10:25 AM
Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®
Carmel by the Sea, CA
Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea

Interesting how people get judged by their car. Does it portray who you are? Can't say. Except to go to their current residence and see how they live, there probably is no better way than what you mentioned already.

Sep 24, 2017 09:31 AM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

We check income, landlord references and do a CCap for wisconsin people, but may start using your screening process for those moving in from out of state.

Sep 24, 2017 07:07 PM
Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Orlando, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Orlando Home Buyers

The trick is not to believe anything they say.

IF they pass the sniff test on the phone, I allow them to see the unit and meet them personally.  The question I always ask is for them to rate themselves 1-10 on cleanliness.  The dirty ones will stumble on the answer.

Then I run a credit and background, that they pay for.

I do not call their previouse landlord aka their best friend ( or any refrences).  Low lifes all have a friend that will lie for them, and pretend to be the landlord.

The point is that you do not rent to someone just because they want to rent it.  I screen a minimum of 30 calls before I have someone I am interested in renting to.


Sep 24, 2017 12:31 PM
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

No tricks.  Just do the work that needs to be done for screening. I know people who keep their homes immaculate and their cars are trash bins. We need to be careful how we judge things and people.  We are often incorrect in our "assumptions".  

Sep 24, 2017 11:34 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


I think at that Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula gave you an excellent tip.  Appearances alone do not guarantee good credit.  A

Sep 24, 2017 10:23 AM
Harry Norman, REALTORS® - Atlanta, GA
Associate Broker

I have a department that handles the screening of tenants. 

Sep 25, 2017 05:21 AM
Dave Halpern
Keller Williams Realty Louisville East (502) 664-7827 - Louisville, KY
Louisville Short Sale Expert

Check social media

Sep 24, 2017 05:34 PM
Richard Weeks
Dallas, TX
REALTOR®, Broker

Background checks and credit reports are the best tricks.

Sep 24, 2017 05:25 PM
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

I ask about what brought them to the area to get an idea of how long they are staying and job stability. Finding out what is important to the tenant in a home by asking questions can tell me how they will treat my places. 

Sep 24, 2017 03:07 PM
Jeff Pearl
RE/MAX Distinctive / LIC in VA - Lovettsville, VA
Full Service Full Time Realtor

No tricks, "just the facts  maam".

Sep 24, 2017 11:44 AM
Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

         I would do a quick search on the internet.  Clerk of Court, Property Appraiser, Intelius, social media sites, sex offender registry, etc.

Sep 24, 2017 11:28 AM
Michael Setunsky
Woodbridge, VA
Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA

Jenifer Kynor I still believe in first impressions, but Christine Kankowski North SD and Temecula makes a good point.

Sep 24, 2017 11:05 AM
Ryan Huggins - Thousand Oaks, CA - Thousand Oaks, CA
Residential Real Estate and Investment Properties

There was a question on this earlier in the week.  My answer is there.

Sep 24, 2017 10:33 AM
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

You need to pay for background screening but also be samrt about what is the best applicant. I rented to a couple with a 540 credit score but they pay cash and were at the rpevious place 16 years. They are at three years so far.

Sep 24, 2017 10:27 AM
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

when it comes to selecting a tenant, it's always a "crap shoot" .... I've seen clean credit and great references result in a tenant that lives like a pig....

Sep 24, 2017 10:03 AM
Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES
Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch! - Spring Hill, FL
Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living

I send them a rental application before everything else. If they opt to not fill it out and return it, they've prescreened themselves. 

Sep 24, 2017 09:45 AM
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

The previous landlord may be a good source. Use a screening service.

Sep 24, 2017 09:25 AM
Doug Dawes
Keller Williams Realty - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

No tricks. I just engage them in conversation and observe their mannerisms. I also use my gut instincts

Sep 25, 2017 08:45 AM
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

You can find out a lot by checking Facebook and Twitter as well as a Google search.

Sep 25, 2017 06:24 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Income and credit trump previous landlord references. 

Sep 25, 2017 05:27 AM
Praful Thakkar
LAER Realty Partners - Andover, MA
Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale

Jenifer Kynor - meeting them in person is the best! 

Sep 24, 2017 10:40 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

I have and I have done this several times in different professions

Sep 24, 2017 06:39 PM
Candice A. Donofrio
Next Wave RE Investments LLC Bullhead City AZ Commercial RE Broker - Fort Mohave, AZ
928-201-4BHC (4242) call/text

I think DePechemode sang it well--everything counts in large amounts.  If ANYTHING seems off, err on the side of caution.

Sep 24, 2017 05:52 PM
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

I don't work with tenants or leases so can't help you with any tips to pre-screen.

Sep 24, 2017 02:36 PM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

I don't work with tenants, my property manager does this.

Sep 27, 2017 07:03 AM
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

There are no shortcuts.

Sep 25, 2017 09:10 AM
Nathan Gesner
American West Realty and Management - Cody, WY
Broker / Property Manager

A credit / criminal background screening is important. A credit score is one of the best indicators. Use a service like MySmartMove to conduct the check.

Sep 25, 2017 05:20 AM
Tony and Suzanne Marriott, Associate Brokers
Serving the Greater Phoenix and Scottsdale Metropolitan Area - Scottsdale, AZ
Haven Express @ Keller Williams Arizona Realty

Yes - I have a property manager handle it!! 

Sep 25, 2017 04:43 AM
Chuck Mixon
The Keyes Company - Cutler Bay, FL
Cutler Bay Specialist, GRI, CDPE, BPOR

I us Scott Roberts and Assoc. for my credit reports.  They have a great program where I have tenant fill out a two page report and they send it to Scott Roberts along with their Credit card information. I never have access to any of the Credit Card  info. Four time I have had the tenant refuse to pay for the report, told them ok, I will find another tenant. So it screened out 4 so  far.

Sep 24, 2017 06:20 PM
Gita Bantwal
RE/MAX Centre Realtors - Warwick, PA
REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel


Sep 24, 2017 06:01 PM