Avoid Bad Tenants! A Tenant Credit Check Would Have Saved These 8 BC Landlords From a Couple Of Non-Paying Tenants Now Owing Them $40,000 In Lost Rent and Other Costs!
We like to inform BC landlords of the important of screening your tenants carefully before handing over the keys to your rental property.
After all, you’ve worked hard to purchase your rental property and you need to protect it and your rental business.
In this blog we will update the situation facing 8 different landlords and provide advice how smart landlords can avoid these types of bad tenants.
Serial Bad Tenants Owe Landlords Nearly $40,000
We wrote last month about a couple of serial bad tenants who convince landlords to rent to them without proper tenant screening. It’s a case that has landlords all over Canada shocked and upset.
An Alberta landlord emailed us asking if they could help in setting up a nation-wide “bad tenant registry.”
As of last month, these bad tenants had just ripped off landlord #6.
A CBC News report shows just how many landlords were cheated by these tenants and the huge financial losses these landlords have suffered.
Counting up all the arrears the landlords claim they are owed by the Perrets equals a large sum of money.
The amount includes unpaid rent, utilities, bailiffs’ fees, cleaning, fees from bounced cheques, court fees and lost rent from vacancies following broken leases.
The amount these serial bad tenants owe their landlords totals $39,650 since July 2012!
Bad Tenant Timeline (How times they have been evicted and how many landlords they owe money to!)
1. July 2012 – September 2012: Tenants Evicted Owing Over $7500
2. September 2012: Tenants Evicted Again Owing the Landlord $3750
3. October 2012 – March 2013: Tenants Evicted Owing $7900
4. March 2013- May 2013: Tenants Evicted Owing $5000
5. June 2013 – October 2013: Tenants Evicted Owing $7500
6. November 2014 – January 2014: Tenants Evicted owing $3000
7. January 2014 – March 2014: Tenants Evicted Owing $5000
The Importance of Avoiding Bad Tenants
On April 28, a judge in Port Coquitlam small claims court ordered Susan and Chris Perret to repay $6,000 to former landlord Suman Parasad by June 9, or go to jail.
Parasad was the first landlord to take the Perrets to small claims court over unpaid rent, claiming the pair racked up almost $8,000 in arrears in 2013.
Rich Coleman, minister responsible for housing in B.C., says that, while most disputes between landlords and tenants in the province are resolved under the Residential Tenancy Act, this case is beyond its purview.
Will These Serial Bad Tenants Go To Jail?
Many of the landlords who were ripped off for thousands of dollars.
However, it looks unlikely.
The RCMP told ripped off landlord Nicole Read she should file a complaint as the lead person for all the eight landlords who were defrauded.
Why B.C. Landlords Need To Do Tenant Credit Checks
There are some common themes for the landlords who were ripped off by these bad tenants.
The reality is they were far too trusting of these tenants and didn’t screen them carefully.
How Can a Tenant Credit Check Help Landlords?
A Vancouver landlord emails in asking us the following:
“Your site keeps telling us landlords to conduct credit checks on our tenants. I’m wondering how a tenant credit check would help landlords in the case of those serial bad tenants?”
Every one of these landlords would have saved themselves months of stress and huge financial losses by running a tenant credit check on these tenants.
How Would The Tenant Credit Help Them?
It’s not only the fact a credit check will show the landlord if the tenants have any history of owing money or judgements against them.
It will also save the landlord from these types of serial bad tenants. Here’s how:
1. A GARDA check will show current and previous addresses
A tenant credit check not only provides you with a credit record and a credit score, it provides you with current and past addresses
2. Experienced landlords will confirm these past addresses
A tenant credit check shows you these addresses. A smart landlord will then contact the landlords of these past addresses.
3. You can talk to the real landlords
You don’t have to believe what the tenants say, you can go see for yourself.
4. You can find out the truth about the tenants
When you talk to the ‘real landlord’ of their current or past landlord you can get a true description of the tenants’ behaviour from the ‘real’ landlord.
5. Make a decision on renting to tenants based on “real” information, not a story or lies
You can make a decision based on ‘real information’ which in this case would lead you to tell these bad tenants a resounding “No! I won’t rent to you!”
No one deserves to get ripped off by bad tenants. However, the reality is these types of tenants are around and you have to be very careful.
A BC landlord credit check would have saved these 8 landlords tens of thousands of dollars!
How Can I Run a Credit Check On My Tenant?
You can get access to premium tenant credit checks by joining the BC Landlords Association.
Associations such as LandlordBC charge landlords a yearly fee to keep being a member.
For small landlords with only one or two units it doesn’t make financial sense to pay a yearly fee.
For this reason, the BC Landlords Association only charges a one-time fee of $99 to become a member.
Once you are a member you get access to premium credit checks for only $10/check.
What BC Landlords Association Is Best For You?
1. Membership with LandlordBC
Wow, it’s difficult to get simple information from them, such as “What is the price of membership?”.
They charge small landlords $150 per year PLUS $7/unit PLUS a processing fee of $50. Can you afford that?
2. Membership with the BC Landlords Association
It’s very clear and up-front.
The BC Landlords Association Only Charges a One Time Registration Fee of $99.
You get access to the “ultimate credit check” from GARDA (one of the leading background check companies in Canada).
This is the “full check” which is very different than what LandlordBC and other associations offer (which are credit checks with very little information compared to a “full credit check”).
The GARDA “full check” isn’t just a “snap-shot” of your potential renters’ financial history, it’s an encyclopaedia!
Rent To Great Tenants (and avoid the serial bad tenants)
Tenant Credit Checks Are Essential For Successful and Profitable Landlords. Protect your rental property with tenant screening including a credit check.
Join the BC Landlords Association for only a one-time registration fee (no annual fee)