Real estate investment professionals in Kitsap County must always be on the lookout for quality tenants. When you can place excellent residents in your rental property, they deliver steady rental income, take good care of your property, and give you peace of mind.
What's the opposite of a quality renter? Professional tenants have one goal in mind: to cause trouble for real estate investors! Here are our expert property management insights into what property owners need to look for to avoid professional residents when screening tenants.
What Are Professional Tenants?
The term "professional" should indicate that these residents are really good at being the worst residents they can be! As professional property management experts, we've seen that these renters make a "career" out of going from rental to rental, leaving a trail of unpaid rent and property damage behind.
Professional tenants are a significant risk to real estate investment professionals and their income. These residents are knowledgeable about landlord-tenant law and can figure out the legal loopholes, exploit gray areas in lease agreements, and more. In many cases, these residents make "big" complaints about small (or nonexistent) issues, then withhold the rent when a landlord doesn't fix the perceived issue. Trying to collect the rent or enforce the rules can lead to a retaliatory lawsuit from a professional tenant.
These Kitsap County renters are experts at gaming the rental home system to leave investors without critical income and with costly property damage.
How Can Property Owners Avoid Them?
Dealing with these residents is a nightmare. The best way to "handle" them is to avoid them!
Identifying these troublesome renters early can help investors from allowing them into a rental property. Once a professional tenant signs the lease agreement, it is too late to prevent the trouble that's sure to come. However, at first glance, these renters often seem like they'll be excellent residents.
Kitsap County property management professionals can help you get past first impressions and learn more about prospective renters through their tenant screening process. When they screen tenants, they will do background checks, look at their rental history, and credit. These critical steps help identify warning signs that you could be dealing with a professional tenant. The more in-depth the screening process, the better chance investors have of catching bad residents before they move in.
Look For Red Flags
If you don't have a screening process, it's time to put one in place. A property manager can help you screen potential renters and look for red flags that indicate a potentially bad resident.
To keep an eye out for professional tenants, watch for:
- Lengthy gaps in their rental history
- References that you can't reach (or tell the same story as other references)
- Offering cash upfront for the security deposit or the first couple rental payments
- Bad credit history
- False information on the application (including a drivers license number or incorrect social security number)
- No verifiable employment
As property management experts, we've seen that professional tenants don't want you to dig into their background during the screening process. They'll often offer cash to pay several months in advance while asking you to skip the background check. If that happens, the potential resident isn't a good idea for your property.
Property Managers Protect Rentals from Bad Tenants
If you're currently dealing with a professional tenant or you're ready to implement a strategy to avoid them in the future, a property manager can help! The right property management team already has experience dealing with these (and other types) of troublesome residents. They know what to look for during the screening process and won't fall for the temptation of cash upfront in exchange for cutting corners when reviewing applications.
An expert property management company also has the experience investors need to draft air-tight leases and enforce them. In many cases, when a professional tenant learns that you have a professional management company handling your rentals, they won't bother to put in an application. They know that expert property managers won't let them move into your property or get away with destructive behavior.
Don't Deal With Professional Tenants! Let Kitsap County Property Management Help
Being aware of professional tenants and the trouble they bring is only part of the battle. Allowing one of these residents into your property sets you up for income loss, property damage, and tenants who won't follow the rules or move out after violating the lease.
If you're worried about professional tenants or you're dealing with one now, Joseph Property Management can help! Our experienced full-service property management professionals have dealt with all kinds of residents (good and bad). We have processes in place to identify potential troublemakers before they ever have a chance to move in. We also enforce leases and use our resources to minimize tenant damage, income loss, and lawsuits for property owners.
When you're ready to turn resident management over to the experts, give us a call! We're here to help.
If you want to learn more about finding the best property, download our free ebook, “The Guide to Finding the Best Property Management Company”