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Old 04-11-2016, 10:19 AM   #21
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The choice of words could have been better, but how about setting it aside and getting back on topic, eh?
Whoops mi'lord, we cross posted.

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Landlord Problem-Too many applicants . . .
Old 04-11-2016, 10:39 AM   #22
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Landlord Problem-Too many applicants . . .

Senator's 625 FICO score cutoff seems quite low to me. I was expecting at least above 700, but what do I know? (I am not a landlord..) Tom, what is your FICO score cutoff?


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Old 04-11-2016, 11:06 AM   #23
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Senator's 625 FICO score cutoff seems quite low to me. I was expecting at least above 700, but what do I know? (I am not a landlord..) Tom, what is your FICO score cutoff?

625 is low, but starts to separate the wheat from the chaff (is that an OK term...?). It also starts to reduce undesirable personal behaviors that come with low credit scores. Domestic abuse, property insurance claims, loud parties, etc. Each landlord will have their own risk tolerance based on their financial condition and the value of their property.

Understanding credit score distribution is the key. Someone with a low score typically has been lying to and cheating the other people they owe money to. It is also one of the most objective criteria that there is. It passes every Fair Housing test that there is. I do not create the score, I do not affect it, 100 people will make the same judgment as I will. A person makes or breaks their credit score, on their own.

I charge $40 for my background checks, but if a person passes, I put that money towards the move in funds. So the check is free if you pass.

There are many different flavors of credit score, I use FICO. Excluding people under 625 eliminates about 25% of the population. Many of these people would make great renters, but the risk of lower profitability gets higher with lower credit scores.

If you use the 'gut feel' approach, you are very likely violating Fair Housing Laws.

Advertising in certain areas, like a company bulletin board, church bulletin, lawn signs in front of the rental, are also potential violations of the Fair Housing act.

You need to use internet advertising that is available to everyone, not just the people who read the areas. If you only use a yard sign, you only attract people from that neighborhood, which almost by definition, is discriminatory.





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Old 04-11-2016, 01:59 PM   #24
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We sold our three rental houses a couple years ago. We've had good, bad and ugly renters. Some were so bad, I really think I could have taken a gun and shot them (but I didn't!). I didn't want to spend my retirement years cleaning up messes. I have less tolerance for people as I get older. If you want to live like a pig, do it in someone else's property. Seems like when the mortgage rates dropped years back, that's when it became harder to find good renters. They had all bought their own houses.
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Old 04-11-2016, 02:14 PM   #25
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Actually, just the opposite happens. Quality renters see the value is not equal to the price. Low quality renters apply anyway. The market will only a market price.

I fill ~10-12 vacancies every year. My average renter stay is ~30 months. I advertise on Craig's and Zillow. 90% of my responses are by email. The actual calls I return, and request an email address.

I send a pre-screen letter, which takes ~5 seconds to cut/paste. It eliminates 95% of all responses to my ad. It lists my tenant requirements, and a few details about the area and apartment. It also has a link to a virtual tour.

Keep in mind, low quality renters move at least 2-3x as often, and apply to 2-3x as many places. So it is natural to get a 95% trash rate.
Ding, ding, ding. And you don't want to get demoted from landlord to slumlord... I like the properties that are transitional properties for people...you can almost tell the ones that are trying to move up the ladder, from those that could care-less...don't rent to careless people.
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Old 04-11-2016, 02:32 PM   #26
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I only have one rental and use a management company since it is almost an hour from me. When I first rented it and didn't have a tenant in one month I myself put an ad on Craigslist and the contact as the management. Apparently they got a lot of response because the management co. wasn't pleased. Well... I didn't really care if they were pleased or not.

I read just yesterday that there is a proposed (?) law that "discriminating" against felons is racist because African Americans and Hispanics are the highest numbers of convicted criminals. Ridiculous. Just wait until you're forced to rent to a rapist and then get sued by a female tenant he assaults.
Or maybe in almost any other country in the world, statistically most of the people with criminal histories in the U.S. would never have been arrested or convicted in the first place:

" The United States prison population of 2.2 million adults is by far the largest in the world. As of 2012, the United States accounted for only about five percent of the world’s population, yet almost one quarter of the world’s prisoners were held in American prisons. "

This was taken form the HUD article from Calmloki's prior post link. Bolded text added.
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Old 04-11-2016, 03:20 PM   #27
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Or maybe in almost any other country in the world, statistically most of the people with criminal histories in the U.S. would never have been arrested or convicted in the first place:

" The United States prison population of 2.2 million adults is by far the largest in the world. As of 2012, the United States accounted for only about five percent of the world’s population, yet almost one quarter of the world’s prisoners were held in American prisons. "

This was taken form the HUD article from Calmloki's prior post link. Bolded text added.
All great political points, but a definite attempt at thread hijacking.

A landlord needs consistent screening criteria, for all applicants, regardless of what protected class, or not, the applicant is in. A landlord cannot be responsible for correcting the wrongs of the political system, or the court system.

Even a perfect screening system will exclude good applicants, and bad applicants will still get in. That is fine.

As a landlord, you need to develop a consistent screening criteria that has a business reason. You cannot exclude Republicans, or Democrats, unless you have a solid business reason. Can you imagine excluding people that voted for Obama? A dirty car is also a bad criteria. Even a past landlord reference is not a good criteria. Not only do some people not have past landlords, the information provided is suspect and not verifiable or correctable. The "gut-feel" screening method is one of the worst.

You can exclude low credit score people, or violent criminals in a multifamily building. Or limit to certain incomes and above. These all all criteria that may affect the rental business directly.

In the end, there will always be a place for everyone. Landlords make mistakes, go broke, and tenants move up in their lives.
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Old 04-11-2016, 03:29 PM   #28
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