Application Form For Residential Rental Properties

By E-Renter Tenant Screening
Posted on August 16, 2006 under Landlord Paperwork and Forms | icon: commentBe the First to Comment

In case, you are not already using a pre-drafted rental application form, perhaps, you would like to draft your own version. Not a bad idea, as there are a number of specific questions you should ask prospective tenants to ensure your rental property is secure in the hands of responsible individuals, who will not damage it or skip away without paying rental or damage charges. These questions will help you to determine the most suitable applicants you should rent your property to. Make certain, the rental application form includes the following questions, and ensure you get the answers in full, as under:

  1. Name in full, as well as, current address. Get the applicant names in full, not just initials or monikers i.e. nicknames. What you need is their legal name, in order to conduct a background check on them or to perform due diligence. In addition, get them to fill in their current address, complete with postal code.
  2. Social Security Number. If, you want to have a background or credit check run on rental applicants, you need their social security number to do so. And, before you can do so, the applicant’s permission will be required. Many landlords use a separate authorisation form for permission for conduction background or credit checks, along with their rental application form. Others include a paragraph in the rental application that states they have the applicant’s permission to conduct various checks. Bring this paragraph to the notice of your applicants and have them initial it as proof, they were informed and made aware of your intentions.Getting social security numbers is important, as they will help avoid confusion, in the event the applicant has a common name, serving to differentiate between two different individuals sharing the same name.
  3. Get the names of co-tenants, roommates or family members, who will share the property. Make sure your rental application form asks for information on roommates if any, or family members who will be living on your property. You should ask the applicant to provide names in full, including the age of co-occupants, and whether they are family or simply roommates.
  4. Get everyone’s rental or residence history. Ensure you have, at least, three of the applicant’s past residential addresses, as well as, the correct address and contact information of previous landlords. Also, there is no harm in asking why they left their previous address, whether the landlord was given proper notice, whose name the utilities were in, dates of residency, and whether they were evicted or asked to vacate the property.
  5. Employment history. Get applicants to list information on past and current employers, including what is their current salary. Employment histories let you know if a prospective tenant is able or unable to hold down a steady job, they indicate strongly, whether the tenant could turn out to be reliable or a bad risk one. Knowing their monthly income lets you know whether they can afford the rental payments. Use the 30% guideline to charge rent, which means if your tenant earns $1,200/- a month, you can safely charge $400/- as rent.
  6. Ask whether they own a vehicle. If your rental property has limited space, knowing upfront whether they own a vehicle can reduce future issues about excessive use of parking spaces. Get the make, model, and licence plate number of all cars owned by tenants and their roommates. Vehicle information will also help in determining if any tenant has sub-let your property without taking permission from you. If you come across strange vehicles parked on your property, you can refer back to this information and check if it could belong to anyone of your tenants or their listed co-occupants, or whether it belongs to a new tenant to whom your property has been sub-let.
  7. Get references and emergency contact addresses / phone numbers. Their references and emergency contacts. Ask applicants to provide a minimum of three references, along with the current address and telephone number of each reference. It is also essential you have an emergency contact name, address and telephone number on record for tracking down a tenant, who has breached his / her lease or has skipped off without paying rent.

As well, your rental application form should have a section for general information. In questionnaire form, you can ask tenants to strike off, whether they have ever been served an eviction notice or a late rent complaint, as well as, any other useful information they may wish to share with you.

The right questions asked on your rental applications will assist in the selection of the best and most suitable applicants for your property. As well, to avoid any mishaps or unwanted tenants, visit for tenant screening and background check services, the best and only way to prevent expensive litigation or penalty charges later on.

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