Quality of tenant

Question for those in the MH rental business…

Do you find the quality of tenant is hard to find than an apartment/house rental?

I’ve been in the property management business for almost 4 years and what I’ve learned is that a tenant renting a $200K rental house can destroy it if you don’t do proper background/criminal checks.

So is the answer to finding a good tenant for a MH or 2000 sq ft house going through the multitude (and necessary) steps of background, tenant and criminal checks?

My feeling is that if the tenant destroys the home, its usually not their first time doing so.

What I’d like to know is what are your keys to success in obtaining a good tenant for your MH rentals. Do you do anything in addition to what I’ve mentioned above?

Thank you in advance…


Tennant screening is definitely one of those items that will sink your boat if you don’t get it right, and likewise, if you are good at screening, there are lots of problems that you will seldom need to deal with.

D, as I read your post it seems that you are simply trying to avoid the destructive tenants….probably no better criteria is available than the characteristics of your destructive former tenants. Think back to their jobs, cleanliness of their car, appearance, manner of speaking, was their app completely filled out? Neatly? How did their references check out? Be very wary of future applicants with similar traits.

Desirable traits in applicants really come down to stability. Stable, job, stable marriage, children that respect their parents and obey them, family ties to the area, a verifiable track record of keeping their agreements, and of course adequate income are all big pluses when screening- if they have all of these traits the decision is easy- Say YES!. If the applicants have none of these traits, again, the decision is easy- Say NO! If the applicants have some but not all of the desirable traits your decisions becomes a lot tougher…But do yourself a favor and don’t take a chance on a young family, if you have to compromise your standards, do so with an empty nester.

Thanks Shawn,

Not just damage though I was using that as an example. Personality problems, non payment, domestic violence, sex offender and previous evictions and others would all classify as concerning.

Have you experienced that if much attention is given prior to turning over the keys that finding good and decent tenants is likely?

I’ve heard the horror articles from Dave Reynolds about renting, but I think that if you do a thorough background check finding good and decent tenants shouldn’t be THAT hard to find.

D, to answer your question; yes, if I rigorously screen, I get much better quality tenants. Now, I should say this…it is much, much slower to do things in this manner. I use home leasing as my least desireable choice to fill homes. I have 8 leased homes in a MHP with84 lots (79 utilized) among those leased homes are a 14 year,7 year resident, a 5 year resident, and 3 residents of 4 years. The other two have less than one year tenancy, and are not up my ideal tenant standards (not even close).
Consider the operation style of those who give advice and share their opinions: from what I can ascertain about Reynolds operation is that his is a employee operated model- much tougher to accomplish what I have described with a “greeter”, and I concur, if left up to a “greeter” and FICO scores for a regional manager to use as his screening tools from a remote office….the results would be a disaster.

Screening save you $$$

Here in WA State we have several cheap screening svs co’s that do a great job at pin-pointing those would-be bad, destructive tenant wannabes and at least one does it w/o getting conventional 3 agency credit report.

No screening? You’re gonna be selected and taken by losers you could have avoided.

Thanks John,

Thanks Shawn, I have been reading your posts on the MHPS forum for the last year or two and I really value your opinion. You’re honest and that’s what I like to hear.

Thanks again,

David R.