Archive for September, 2013

Should You Worry if Your Tenant Has a Previous Bankruptcy

Should You Worry if Your Tenant Has a Previous Bankruptcy?

 

You want the best tenant in your property and often the best tenant is one with positive tenant history and a good credit report. When you think you have found the right tenant for your rental you will run a background check and with that check comes information regarding a past bankruptcy. What should you do from there? Do you reject a tenant because they have a past bankruptcy?

 

The Financial Factor

A past bankruptcy does show a level of financial irresponsibility on the prospective tenant’s part, but that does not necessarily mean they are a poor tenant. Hundreds of consumers file bankruptcy each month and with the declining economy and increasing unemployment rates, some consumers get over their heads in a matter of a few short months – thus, leading to bankruptcy down the road. Therefore, you should consider the reasons behind the tenant’s bankruptcy and take that into consideration. In addition, you should see when the bankruptcy was filed and how the tenant’s credit history has been since then. A tenant with a four year old bankruptcy and positive credit history to date should not be a cause for concern, while a tenant with a four year old bankruptcy and negative credit history to date should be.

 

The Legal Factor

When you reject a tenant for credit issues, you need to keep in mind that you have to reject fairly. If you have a zero tolerance for past bankruptcies for a 10 year period, then you must reject any and all applicants with a bankruptcy within the past 10 years – regardless of their reasons for filing bankruptcy and how their credit is to date. According to the Fair Housing Act, rejections must be kept on a level playing field, including credit history requirements. Therefore, consider your current rejection policy regarding credit scores and bankruptcies and make sure you apply that across the board.

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Accurate Credit Employer Credit Checks

Dear Employers,

 

We are pleased to announce new licensing regulations affecting the types of background screening you, as an employer, will be able to access. From now on, Accurate Credit Bureau will be able to provide employers with Credit Reports on prospective employees, a service previously unavailable. Accurate Credit Bureau will continue to provide comprehensive criminal back ground reports, MVR driving records, and SSN verification as part of the employer packages. Employers wishing to access credit reports must do a one-time on-site inspection for clearance to access credit information. More information about an on-site inspection can be found here. An on-site inspection simply means that a contractor will meet at your place of business (or wherever you run your reports) to ensure proper security guidelines are met such as a password protected computer, locking filing cabinet, shredder, etc. For any questions or further information, please feel free to contact us at 512 285 6078. We look forward to working with you and providing all of your pre-employment screening needs.

 

Thanks,

 

Accurate Credit Bureau

Tips for the First Time Landlord

Tips for the First Time Landlord

 

Whether you have become a landlord by accident or choice, you will notice there is a plethora of laws and tasks you have on your plate. Not only do you collect rent from tenants, but you have to screen prospective tenants, keep up the property and follow specific health and living guidelines set forth by your city and county area. Though there is no magic guide that spells out a step-by-step process to being the best landlord in the country, there are a few tips you can consider to make being a landlord a little less disconcerting.

 

Always put it in Writing

No matter what you are discussing with a prospective tenant or current tenant, make sure you have it in writing. Though this seems simple enough, hundreds of landlords each year find themselves battling out a court case against tenants because they skipped this very simple step. If you want your tenant to follow a set number of rules while living on your property, put it in the Lease Agreement. If you want your tenant to have a noise curfew, put it in the Lease Agreement. Anything you want done, needs to be written down — period.

 

Get a Security Deposit

Even if the new tenant is a family friend, you need to require a security deposit. This deposit protects your property, which is essentially your investment. The security deposit should only be returned to the tenant upon vacating the property and proving that it is in the same condition as it was when initially rented.

 

Get Financial History on Your Tenant

A tenant can get great personal and professional references from anywhere, but they cannot fake their credit history. Make sure that you pull a credit report and ask for financial backing from a tenant before allowing them to rent your property. This not only ensures your tenant will pay rent, but that they are financially responsible as well.