We use various strategies to ensure we let properties to the very best tenants.
Let a good property – firstly you as the Landlord has a very important part to play. It is imperative that you have a good quality property that is presentable and clean from the viewing stage. The best tenants will want to live in the best houses, the level of your property will reflect the level of your tenant and the success of the tenancy.
Advertise on Rightmove – this is by far the best portal for finding a tenant. We find that the quality of the leads that come from Rightmove far out way those from other portals.
Be judgemental – when you are at the viewing you need to ask yourself a few questions about the prospective tenants you meet. How are they presenting themselves to you? The viewing process is as much about you selling them the house and the area as they are selling themselves as a tenant to live in it. Are they clean and tidy? Are their shoes clean? If a person can look after themselves then we hope they can look after a property. I have met a tenant who came to the viewing with half of their lunch down their shirt, I did not let to them.
If they come with a member of their family, be inquisitive towards them as well. Family members will often be guests at the house so you need to ensure they are also of a good nature and presentable.
Perform references – I would never let to a tenant without performing a reference check on them. I would always use an external company to do this. Do not just take a name and number that the prospective tenant gives you as a reference, that could be ANYBODY! Ask them to fill out a full reference form and submit it to a professional company to perform the check for you.
Visit their existing property – on the pretense that you want to collect the application form. How are they living now?