From across the state of Texas, and even from around the country, lots of people are heading to El Paso to live and work. It’s a fine rental market, so landlords with property in El Paso should have no problems keeping their units filled. However, not everyone makes a good tenant, so landlords should take the time to follow the El Paso tenant screening laws and regulations. It’s the best way to sort out applicants to find the cream of the crop.
In this post, landlords can learn more about:
- El Paso tenant screening laws
- Free landlord resources
- Entire screening processes
- Find the best tenant screening services
Tenant Screening El Paso Laws
The municipal laws of El Paso concerning screening apply to all landlords. In fact, there are numerous laws that help applicants and tenants alike. While federal and state laws are significant, sometimes highly populated metro areas enact additional El Paso tenant screening laws.
El Paso tenant screening laws include things like this:
- The city doesn’t limit how much landlords can charge for application fees
- Application fees in El Paso are not refundable
- Security deposits and application fees are two different transactions between applicants and landlords
El Paso tenant screening laws are in place to protect landlords and applicants. To do better with their time and money, landlords need to stay up to speed.
Check Out This Common Screening Mistake
The most common screening mistake that El Paso landlords make is to fail to get a signature of consent from the applicant. Without a signature, landlords cannot order a background check on the applicant. Landlords must amend their application pages if there is no place for the applicant to sign.
Here is a RentPrep form:
Top arrow shows the nonrefundable application fee statement. Bottom arrow shows the signature line for applicants to give their consent to a background check.
Resources for Tenant Screening in El Paso
RentPrep has gathered a helpful list of links for you to use in your real estate business. There’s no better way to find top tenants than to use the information here.
- Rental Application PDF – Have every prospective tenant fill out this rental application.*
- Move-In Move-Out checklist – This is helpful for after the tenant screening process to make sure you document the condition of the rental
- Rental Lease Agreement – Once you’ve decided on a tenant you’ll want to draw up a lease. (make sure this editable doc is compliant with your state laws)
- Summary of Your Rights Under the FCRA – Our screeners here at RentPrep are FCRA certified to ensure compliance on your screening report
- Texas Attorney General – Detailed information on renting property across the state
*Try a no blank space policy, to allow landlords to deny any application that have blanks for answers. In other words, an application with a blank space for an answer is discarded.
El Paso Tenant Screening Process
Landlords that want to fair and consistent have a tenant screening criteria list for their applications. This list means they have to come up with several ideal qualities in a tenant. Writing down this list preserves it throughout the tenant screening process. Each tenant feature should be realistic and not just a dream.
Here’s a good example of a El Paso tenant screening criteria list:
- No criminal history
- No smoking
- Rent to income ratio as 3:1
- No pets
- No previous evictions
- At least 600 credit score
- No bankruptcy
To sort applications, the landlords just have to compare each one with their tenant screening criteria list. The closest matches move on to the next phase. Of course, landlords cannot include anything that is discrimination. El Paso doesn’t take well to housing discrimination. Landlords can learn more here or at the federal website, hud.gov website.
El Paso tenant screening laws include:
- Landlords have no limit to what they can charge as application fees.
- No discrimination in housing is allowed in El Paso or the state of Texas.
- Landlords are able to legally deny all applications that don’t meet their defined criteria.
Check out this website for more El Paso information on landlords and tenants.
Tenant Screening Done Right
If you want to learn tenant screening this is where you start.
We’ve put together 10 chapter guide on tenant screening.
Each chapter will walk you through the process and show you how to identify and place the perfect tenant.
Take the time to go through this tutorial and your future self will thank you.
Check Out Your Texas Screening Guide
In many cases cities have their own screening rules and regulations while the state has another set of rules that govern the screening process.
Click here to go to our post on “Texas Tenant Screening Process.”
Finding the Right Tenant Screening Services
After El Paso landlords identify the top few applicants, they’ll send them on to a tenant screening service for a background check. It’s the clearest and best way to identify which of the applicants will make the best tenant.
The tenant screening company will look at:
- Previous addresses
- Judgments and liens
Of course, landlords in El Paso must take advantage of all that tenant screening services provide. There’s no better way to get a glimpse into an applicant’s past than via a background check.
At RentPrep, we have experience with over 21,000 landlords over the past 10 years. Check out our tenant screening packages to see the services we offer.
Our FCRA certified screeners will put your mind at ease by providing the best tenant screening report available.