When you are a landlord and have an empty rental unit, you may want to do whatever you can to get it rented as quickly as possible to begin collecting rent and covering your unit's expenses. But it is important to find the right tenant for your property. Making a wrong choice in a tenant can end up costing you more than a month or two in lost rent, as a bad tenant can cause physical property damage cost you legal expenses. Here are some tips to help you make the right choice for a future tenant:

Complete a Credit Check

You should always have a prospective tenant pay an application fee and fill out an application with their information and signature. This will give you their permission to check necessary information to make the decision to rent to them, which includes requesting a credit report on each legal adult applicant

The application fee will cover the cost of a credit check, which you can order online and review to help you make the decision. A landlord services company or one of the credit bureau companies can provide you with a tenant screening credit report for each application. Look for negative items to help you in your decision, such as collections from unpaid rent. If a tenant has skipped out on rent in the past, they may likely do it to you.

Complete a Background Check

It is also a good idea to complete a background check on each applicant, which you can request along with their credit report. This background check will tell you any past criminal history and legal charges they are currently dealing with. If your applicant has had a history of such items as drug use, selling drugs, robbery, or another similar legal issue, you may want to reconsider accepting them as a tenant and living on your property.

Check Rental History

As part of reviewing your tenant's application, you should call their past landlords to verify their history as a tenant. Find out if they would rent to them again and if there were any problems during the lease term. And don't only call their last landlord if they have had several over the past few years. If the applicant is not a good tenant, their current landlord may be motivated to tell you incorrect information to get them out of the unit and moved into yours.

Contact a company like Miami Apartment Rentals for more information and assistance.