Tenant Selection Process

You want tenants who’ll care for your property and fulfil all their obligations. Before signing a tenancy agreement we gather information about potential tenants, to help us make a decision.

We only ask for the minimum amount of personal information we need to help decide who to rent the property to. By asking the right questions from prospective tenants, you can make more informed decisions about if they’re suitable for your rental.

You don’t have to tell a prospective tenant why you’re not going to rent the property to them, but they may appreciate any feedback you can provide. You can’t decide who to rent to or whether to continue a tenancy, if your reasons breach the Human Rights Act 1993. For example, you can’t turn down a potential tenant because of their ethnicity.

Be methodical
A casual chat with a potential tenant may give you a feel for how suitable they are. While this is important, you should be methodical when selecting tenants.

Interview them
Ask them if the property suits their needs and if they’re interested in living there. Let them know your expectations and answer any questions they have. For example, how much the bond is and when rent should be paid.

You might want to talk about:

• Whether the property will suit them
• The last two places they rented and why they moved
• Whether they’ve been involved in any tenancy disputes
• Their circumstances and ability to pay the rent
• How many people will live in the house
• Whether they have pets
• What sort of tenancy you both prefer (fixed-term or periodic)
• If they're familiar with their responsibilities as a tenant. For example paying rent on time, telling you about maintenance or repairs, and keeping the place reasonably clean and tidy.

Check their references
Potential tenants provide details of two referees on their application forms. These may be a friend, a co-worker, their employer or anyone else who knows them well. It’s useful if one referee is the tenant’s current or previous landlord.

Check their credit history
Potential tenants give their consent for you to check their credit history on the pre-tenancy application form.

Check if they have been to the Tenancy Tribunal
You might want to ask if the people who want to rent your house have been to the Tenancy Tribunal before.

You might want to talk about:

• Why they went to the Tenancy Tribunal
• If they were the applicant or had an application made against them.

Don’t skip important steps
Don’t skip reference or credit checks because a tenant offers extra rent upfront. Never accept the tenant’s application to rent the property until you’ve done all your checks and fulfilled all legal requirements.

To get some reliable support in managing your property, contact us today to find out more.