The tenant background check sites can be your savior if you want to lend your property to potential tenants and want to get them screened before letting them on your premises.
You may be wondering why run background checks on your tenants in the first place?
Well, it is highly crucial to do so so that you know if the person you are harboring does not have any criminal background or to know in advance how their credit score is.
You can even get a report on any eviction notices that they have been served.
All this information can help you decide and choose the best possible applicant.
Now that you know the importance of getting a tenant screening done let’s look at the best sites that will help you in this.
- Best FCRA-Certified Screeners – RentPrep
- Best Credit Reports – SmartMove
- Best Tenant Background Check Site – Rentberry
- Best Online Background Checks – First Advantage
- Best Digital Process – Apartments.com
What Is Tenant Screening Service??
Tenant Background Check involves screening candidates who apply to lend your property.
A Tenant Background Check involves reports on a person’s criminal history, eviction reports, credit score data, references, police records, and more.
There are different sites offering different services at various prices.
Let’s have a look at these so that you can find the one that suits you best according to your needs:
5 Best Tenant Background Check Sites
Have a look at these excellent sites for tenant background checks:
1) RentPrep – Best FCRA-Certified Screeners
RentPrep is a popular and excellent website to carry out tenant background checks.
Using it, you can access reports, including Eviction reports, Income verification reports, Credit reports, and more.
The best part about RentPrep is that they have FCRA-certified screeners, which means that these experts will cross-verify the reports you get. If you are keen on the accuracy, then RentPrep is for you.
Read RentPrep Review
- Availability of background check.
- Applicant pays feature.
- FCRA-certified screeners.
RentPrep becomes an excellent choice even when it comes to pricing.
The most basic plan at RentPrep starts from $21, and it goes further up if you decide to choose any add-on from the available options.
Pros And Cons
2) SmartMove – Best Credit Reports
SmartMove offers the best credit score reports backed by the reliability of TransUnion.
If you are someone who especially wants access to credit reports and the rest other things are not that important to you, then SmartMove is for you.
It is a reputable company, and you can use it on a pay-per-report basis too. However, it is not ideal for someone looking for full-fledged reports.
Read Smartmove Review
- Identity verification.
- Straight forward interface.
- Resident score.
- Leasing recommendation
SmartMove offers three plans. The most basic plan costs $25. The Standard check costs $38, and the premium costs $40.
Pros And Cons
3) Rentberry – Best Tenant Background Check Site
Rentberry is a very popular and our top favorite site to choose from. What makes it special is that you can do everything online without even moving out of your house.
Be it house tour, payment, maintenance, filling formalities, etc. This is perfect for both tenants and landlords, and both parties can very easily do their respective jobs.
Read Rentberry Review
- A virtual tour is available.
- E-sign papers.
- Bid custom offers.
- Send maintenance requests online.
Rentberry charges $19.99, and the report includes credit score, criminal history, driving, and civil records.
Although the report does not have a lot of details available, it is certainly affordable.
Pros And Cons
4) First Advantage – Best Online Background Checks
First Advantage holds a good reputation among customers and offers effective tenant background checks.
Using it, you can get your hands on reports, including criminal records, drivers record, eviction reports, etc. Let’s have a look at other details of First Advantage below.
- Offers online background checks.
- Reports can be customized.
- Caters to more than fifteen industries.
First Advantage offers four plans. The most basic plan starts from $20 onwards and goes up to $105 for the most comprehensive reports.
Pros And Cons
5) Apartments.com – Best Digital Process
Apartments.com is a rental management company that we love. It has helped millions of tenants and landlords to help find homes and rent properties, respectively.
Using it, the landlords can list their apartments, and the tenants can easily find the ones they like for themselves.
Apartments.com gives you reports with information like income-to-rent ratio, credit score reports, criminal reports, etc.
It is best for landlords as they can ask their tenants to pay for their reports, and also everything can be carried out online.
- Generate lease online.
- Collect payments online.
- Manage maintenance.
Apartments.com is free of cost for the landlords, and even tenants would be charged only 2.75% if they make payment using a credit card or debit card.
Pros And Cons
|Comparison||Trustpilot Ratings||Founded||Features||BBB Rating||Price|
|Rentberry||2.9||2015||Virtual tour, |
E-sign papers, etc.
|Not accredited||$19.99 per report|
|First Advantage||2.8||2003||Customized reports, online background checks, etc.||Not accredited||$20 onwards|
|Apartments.Com||2.3||1992||Collect payments online, Manage maintenance, etc.||Not accredited||Free|
|SmartMove||3.7||2008||Resident score, Leasing recommendation, etc.||Not accredited||$25 per report|
|RentPrep||Not available||2007||FCRA-certified screeners, Applicant pay feature, etc.||Not accredited||$21 per report|
How Does A Tenant Screening Service Benefit The Landlord?
Getting a potential tenant screened can help the landlord in many ways.
With a tenant background check report, the landlord can determine beforehand whether the tenant pays the rent on time or not, what is their credit score like, and in some cases, they also get to know about any personal or student loan that the tenant has which may hinder payments.
They can also see the applicant’s rental history and eviction notices if any.
All these things can help the landlord immensely to make a prudent decision while renting out his/her place.
Things To Look For Before Choosing A Tenant Screening Service
These are the following things that we look for while choosing a Tenant Screening Service:
- The service should be FCRA-compliant
- Company’s reputation and history
- Price and plans offered
- Amount of information offered
- Customer reviews and ratings
- Human-verified reports
What do Tenant Background Check Services offer?
Tenant Background Check Services offer a couple of important checks, these may include the following:
- Credit Reports
- Eviction reports
- Police records
- Criminal reports
- Reference checks
- Income reports
- Felony or misdemeanor charges
- Background checks, and more.
This was our take on the five best Tenant Screening Services that are available out there.
In this article, we shared our top five favorite sites with you, and you can choose any of these that fits your criteria the best.
And remember, it is always better to be safe than sorry. Hence, run background checks on your tenants before letting them into your house, that too for your own safety.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and found what you were looking for.
Do I have to take my tenant's approval before running background checks on them?
Yes, in most cases, you are required to ask for your tenant’s approval before accessing their reports.
This is important to safeguard the tenant’s personal information.
And note if you do not comply with this standard procedure, it may be considered illegal.
Do I have to pay for my tenant's background check reports?
Many sites offer the option where the landlord can ask the tenants to pay for the background checks such as Rentprep, Rentberry, and more. And also, essentially, the tenant is required to pay for their background checks.
Is it really necessary to run tenant screening?
Yes, you should most definitely do tenant screenings to save yourself from any harm or danger.
Many times, we are completely unaware of the tenant’s identity, and for all we know, some of them can be dangerous or even criminals.
You wouldn’t want to give them abode on your premises, right? So run tenant background checks always to keep yourself safe.
For how long does an eviction notice history remain on the tenant's background check report?
Eviction history details are shown in the tenant’s report for seven years as per the guidelines issued by FCRA.
How much does a tenant screening service costs?
Tenant screening services can cost anywhere between $19-$25 per report.
Shefali Jain is a Content Writer & Editor at USWorkforce.org
After completing her graduation in hospitality, Shefali decided to follow her passion and started writing. Shefali has been writing for two years now and contributes to our website as a skilled editor and content writer with strong research skills. Writing product and service reviews, biographies, and book reviews are some of her key areas, among many others in which she specializes. In her time at the organization, she has written and edited content on a range of topics, including employment law, human resources, and business management.