Finding The Perfect Tenant For Your Leicestershire Property

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The only time that Landlords are totally in the driving seat with regard to their Tenant is before the property has been rented to them. Once the Tenant has moved in, Landlord options for dealing with any problems become much more limited, time-consuming and expensive. It is therefore crucial that you do all you can to avoid potential nightmare Tenants at this early stage.

Simply follow these three easy steps to finding the perfect Tenant:

1) Assume nothing and check everything!

To find the perfect Tenant for your property you need to stack the odds in your favour, the only way you can realistically do this is by thoroughly credit-checking and referencing them.

 Here is a list of some of the things you will need to check: 

  • Voters' Roll
  • Public information check for CCJ's, Bankruptcy and Voluntary Arrangements
  • Proof of photographic identity (passport or driving licence)
  • Proof of current address (recent utility bill or financial statement)
  • Last three months' Bank statements (is the account being managed appropriately, or is it permanently overdrawn?)
  • Last three months' salary confirmation (wage slips for proof of income)
  • Employer's reference (full or part-time, length of contract and time employed)
  • Accountant's reference if self-employed
  • Previous Landlord's reference (establish whether there were payment issues, if any dilapidation was recorded and how the property was maintained)
  • If possible, a last but one Landlord's reference (their last Landlord may give the Tenants a good reference just to get rid of them, so if possible, try to speak to their last but one Landlord - a quick telephone call will tell you all you need to know)

It may seem like a lot of things to check and you may be tempted not to bother because your Tenant seems like a respectable professional, however you must resist this temptation. Unless you have personally known the Tenant for some time, assume nothing and check everything.


2) Consider a Guarantor

  • If you have any doubts at all about your Tenant, however you would still like to proceed with them for some reason, you should always request for them to provide a suitable Guarantor.
  • The Guarantor will underwrite the Tenant’s obligations to pay the rent, make good any damage, settle outstanding bills, etc.
  •  Always request for a Guarantor if your Tenant:
  • Has no previous rental history
  • Has less than twelve months' employment history
  • Has not worked for their current employer for more than six months
  • Is self-employed but has less than three years' satisfactory accounts
  • Has been working abroad in the previous six months
  • Earns less than three times the annual rent
  • Is employed in an occupation which is considered changeable
  • Is a student or is in receipt of housing benefit
  • Has a low (or no) credit score
You should of course still credit-check and reference any Guarantor exactly the same as you would for your Tenant.
For complete peace of mind, you may also want to consider taking out Landlord Rent Guarantee insurance to include legal expenses.


3) Trust your instincts

Only once you have completed all your credit checks and references, (and, if necessary, obtained a Guarantor), should you consider judging your Tenant on your intuition and instincts.

The Tenant may have passed all the checks with flying colours but more importantly do you feel you can trust them? Have they been pleasant and straightforward to deal with?

If you have any reservations at this stage it may be better to cut your losses and move on. Another week or two spent looking for a decent Tenant is infinitely better and less costly than dealing with a nightmare Tenant at a later date.

Of course, there are no guarantees that you will never have a problem with your Tenant at some point in the future, but hopefully by following these three easy steps you should eliminate 95% of the issues that so many Landlords have to deal with. You will also be giving yourself the best chance of finding those perfect Tenants.

 In addition to thorough Tenant referencing it is critically important for Landlords to have a properly drafted Tenancy Agreement drawn up. 

James Sellicks Lettings operates a strict Tenant referencing process to guarantee our Landlords of the highest standards and expectations with all our Tenants.

James Sellicks Lettings issue comprehensive Assured Shorthold Tenancy Agreements which are continually revised and prepared to ensure compliance with up to date statutory regulations at all times.

Call us on 01162 851 600 to see how we can help you to find your perfect Tenant.

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