February 1st, 2014
Make Tenant Criminal Checks Part of Your Expert Tenant Screening System
Ontario landlords know the importance of tenant screening in 2014.
Renting to good tenants is the key for succeeding as a landlord.
And there are lots of good tenants out there.
They are looking for high quality rental housing run by service-oriented, knowledgeable, professional landlords like you.
Good tenants pay their rent on time and respect your property.
We’ve seen so many stories of the damages bad tenants can cause over the past year.
A quick look at the our landlord forum will show you stories of landlords losing thousands of dollars in lost rent and spending even more to repair damages to their rental properties.
Some investors, such as these Ottawa landlords, are even thinking of getting out of the residential rental industry and moving to commercial rentals.
With commercial rentals you have a lot more landlord rights.
You don’t have to deal with the Landlord and Tenant Board and if your tenants don’t pay the rent you can take effective action.
Bad Tenants and Marijuana
A recent story in the Guelph Mercury shows another problem landlords can face if you don’t screen properly: renters who break the law.
Here’s what happened.
According the newspaper report the landlord evicted their tenant.
Experienced landlords know some tenants leave garbage behind when they leave.
After all, Ontario landlords are not allowed to charge a damage deposit and this often leads to tenants moving out without cleaning up thoroughly.
Usually a few hours of cleaning or hiring a cleaning company can get your rental property back into good shape.
Except this time it was different
Instead of the usual bags of trash, refrigerators full of food, or old clothes and toys, this evicted tenant left something behind we’re sure he regrets forgetting about.
The landlord got the police involved because what the tenant left behind was a duffle bag filled with marijuana.
According to Guelph police, there were over 3 grams of marijuana left in the bag.
The reality is it’s not only British Columbia landlords who have to worry about tenants and pot these days.
It’s a problem landlords are facing all over Canada.
How much marijuana was left in the duffle bag?
If the amount left by the evicted tenant was old on the ‘market’ at current prices the street value of the pot would be over $30,000!
The former tenant from Owen Sound was charged not only with ‘possession’ but with having it for the purpose of ‘trafficking.’
Tenant Criminal Checks
This is another example for why smart landlords focus on tenant screening.
This includes tenant credit checks and checking references carefully.
But what about criminal checks?
Fortunately, landlords can now do high quality, low cost tenant criminal checks with Garda through membership with the Ontario Landlords Association.
Protect yourself and your investment.
By adding a criminal check to your screening system you lower your risk factor and increase the chance you will find and rent to great tenants.