When trying to find the right tenant you can save yourself a lot of time by knowing what questions to ask potential tenants.
Marketing a vacant rental property means you will be getting phone calls from interested prospective tenants with all kinds of questions.
Save time for both you and the interested caller by conducting a pre-showing interview (over the phone) that reveals whether you are right for each other.
After answering the caller’s questions about the rental property, mention that you have a few questions of your own that will help them determine whether the rental property is a good fit for them.
It also gives you a chance to see whether the caller meets your initial criteria for screening.
20 Questions To Ask Potential Tenants:
- Do you currently rent, and if so, where?
- How long have you lived in your current home?
- Why are you looking for a new place to live?
- What date would you want to move in?
- What kind of work do you do?
- What is a rough estimate of your income?
- How many people would be living with you?
- How many people living with you smoke?
- How many parking spaces would you require if you rented here?
- How many pets do you have?
- Do you think your current landlord will give you a favorable reference?
- Does your current landlord know you are thinking of moving?
- Have you ever had an eviction?
- Are you familiar with our rental application process?
- Are there any issues I should know about before I run a background screening for all the adults in the household?
- Have you filed for bankruptcy recently?
- Will you be fine to pay our lease application fee of ($ amount) if you fill out the application?
- Would you be able to pay the security deposit of ($ amount) at the lease signing?
- Are you willing to sign a 1-year lease agreement?
- Do you have any questions for me about the process?
Based on what kind of answers the caller provides, you may be able to save both of you a lot of time and energy pursuing something that isn’t going to work.
For example, after you ask about the caller’s pets and you explain about your pet policy, you both may come to the understanding that their application would be denied based on pet ownership.
They may also learn something about the rental that doesn’t suit them and decline to pursue the property any further. Either way, you have conducted an efficient pre-showing interview that gives you time to work with truly qualified applicants.
How To Call Tenant Applicant References
After you’ve pre-screened a tenant applicant over the phone, with the 20 questions above, you’ll want to show them the rental.
If they’re interested and fill out a rental application you’ll want to call their references.
We’ve created a separate post walking you through with video tutorials on calling tenant references.
How To Screen Applicants After Initial Questions
The purpose of the pre-screening questions is to limit the amount of bad applicants you show your rental unit to.
If the applicant sounds good over the phone and passes your criteria you will want to show them the rental.
We’ve created a tenant screening guide that walks you through all the steps involved.