It's Not Just About the Credit Score...

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Sue Carrell & Associates DRE#01386664 MLS#B319655
When selecting your next tenant, consider way more than a credit score… As a property manager in Santa Rosa, CA, I am dedicated to finding the best possible tenants for my property owners. Since the market has become so active, new rules are evolving that were not evident in the recent past. Here’s just 6 of them: Rule 1: Don’t put as much weight on the credit score. Consider the content of the report. What are the liabilities? What is the current debt ratio to income? Rule 2: Talk to the past two landlords if possible. The current landlord may be eager to move this prospect out of his property. Rule 3. If pets are being considered, ask questions about barking, damage, etc. Rule 4: Ask if they smoke ANYTHING, not just tobacco. Rule 5: When verifying employment, ask about the job security for this individual (in a way that will evoke an honest answer). Rule 6. Make it perfectly clear that NO growing of marijuana is permitted at all, anywhere, certificates or not.

Comments (3)

Daniel H. Fisher (704) 617-3544 - Charlotte, NC
MCRP - Charlotte Real Estate, NC or SC

We do a four way background check around Charlotte - criminal, employment, rental, credit. 

May 29, 2011 08:00 AM
Sue Carrell

Yes, that is pretty standard...thanks for commenting on my blog. It's nice to know that someone actually read it. So what do you charge for you application fee? And do you make the verification calls yourself or do you rely on a service to do it? Just curious.

May 30, 2011 04:45 AM
Justin Wagner

Hi Sue,

I also read your article and found it very interesting. I couldn't agree with you more that tenants need to look at other data. Not only can property managers rely soley on credit data. Let me ask you a question, what happens when you are screening a pre-tenant and they have very little to no credit history, but they pay their bills on time, they have bank accounts, they have no evictions, etc? Do you turn them away. That is a $40 billion market you can tap into (I am not just saying this, but GE Money is). There is the 4th credit bureau report known as PRBC that will allow you make safe and sound choices in providing these clients (by the way $50 million Americans have little to no credit history) with a place to live. While at the same time, you can help them build their credit report. Nowadays, Ford Motor Credit Union, Dell PC, and mortage companies now look a this report in their factor decision process. There is your competitive advantage against the competition. I encourage you to look at our website: Not only can I help you in credit, but I can also guarantee an increase in your revenue while decreasing expenses and risks and increase your marketability. Thanks and again like the article. Justin

Dec 07, 2011 06:30 AM