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lee

Registered: 03/27/09
Posts: 20
Reply with quote  #1 
After showing a few persons the apartment, they are all interested in applying for it. I have to deny three of them and I will check credit for the two that I think will be better fit.

What should I say to deny a applicant if nothing really wrong with them but I just have to choose a person that I like a little bit more?

Thank you in advance for your help!
Sam

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 563
Reply with quote  #2 
Create a list of qualifications rating points for every applicant.  Gut feeling gains 10 points (for instance) in my rating system -- so you can rate who you trust or don't trust accordingly.  You really don't have to tell them anything if they do not meet your qualifications.  Whether you send them a letter or make a phone call or not (unless it's based on credit score, then the FCRA letter is required) is up to you.

But you do have to be careful not to discriminate, so be sure to rate everyone fairly and have a sound reason for choosing someone else over them (which you do not have to share with anyone unless you get sued for discrimination), then you need to have your rating system in order. 

Easiest to do a sheet for every applicant automatically, that way you're covered if you have to go back into records for any reason. 

At least I hope I'm doing it right this way -- others please chime in, I'm fairly new at this too.



OHlandlord

Registered: 01/20/07
Posts: 3,532
Reply with quote  #3 
I agree with the list of qualifications.  But I wouldn't have a point system.  The 10 points you give out for gut feeling, for instance, is easily arguable in court.  You wouldn't be able to convince a judge that they were less qualified based on your gut feeling.  The best thing to do is to just document the business reasons why you turned them down.  Document their income (not 3.5 x the rent), their criminal or civil court records, their rental history (or lack of it), their rental references, their length of time on the job (too short?), the number of tenants to live in the unit, their demeanor, if they bad mouth their current LL, how their children behave at the showing, how they are dressed if sloppy, etc.  Document all the sound business reasons you would deny them.  

You can simply state that you have a more qualified applicant or an earlier applicant.  There wil be times you have to deny a perfectly good applicant for a better one.
lee

Registered: 03/27/09
Posts: 20
Reply with quote  #4 
Thank you so much, Sam & OH LL!!!

You guys are wonderful!!!!!!

Sam

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 563
Reply with quote  #5 
Yes, great info, thanks.  I will change my rating system -- in most cases though, applicants were automatically disqualified for other reasons, so I think I'm safe in not going back and revamping what I have done so far.  Let me know if you think otherwise.

roamyn

Registered: 04/07/09
Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #6 
You even have to be careful with documentation.

We had 4 page applications that included children & pet information.  Two families had 5 or more children and we felt the house was too small (no backyard - side yard; 3 bedrooms - one very small).

One of the families reported us to HUD and we're being forced to go to a class on discrimination.  Luckily we have rented to a family with children, so they couldn't charge us on being discriminatory per se, but HUD said if we didn't go to this class, they (HUD) could technically take us to court.
OHlandlord

Registered: 01/20/07
Posts: 3,532
Reply with quote  #7 

When denying for number of tenants on the application, remember to go by the HUD rule of 2 per BD + 1.  A 3 BD house could conceivably hold 7 tenants.  If you choose to lower the occupancy limit, you need to have a good business reason to do so (local sq. footage regulation, facilities/septic tank won't accomodate that many, bedrooms very small, etc.)  You need a good reason to lower the occupancy below HUD guidelines.

Sam

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 563
Reply with quote  #8 

2 to a Bd in all cases?  I thought the children, if over a certain age, I thought 7, had to be same sex to share a bedroom. 

OHlandlord

Registered: 01/20/07
Posts: 3,532
Reply with quote  #9 

In HUD rentals, they do in most places.  But their guideline doesn't account for the sex of each occupant.  It is just a general occupancy guideline.  And the parents can always claim something like "the father will stay in a son's room and the mother in a daughter's room", or "one child will sleep on a sleeper sofa".  (So that a family of 4 - 2 parents and a son & daughter, still must be considered for a 2 BD.)  You have to be very careful when considering denying for number of tenants and have some sound business reason why you cannot allow that many occupants.

Sam

Registered: 05/29/08
Posts: 563
Reply with quote  #10 

Quote:
Originally Posted by lee
Thank you so much, Sam & OH LL!!!

You guys are wonderful!!!!!!

Gals
wg928

Registered: 12/18/08
Posts: 11
Reply with quote  #11 

OH as always has it right for your protection soo be prepared that way, however, character judgement can quite often be off, wayyy off; I see most times landlords may have only "luck" when it comes to finding a "good" tenant, given the "tangible factors screening",  there are many sheep in wolves clothing. Gut feelings can be your 2nd only hope.....Lee, best regards

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