Renting a property can be a daunting task, especially when faced with the challenge of evaluating a tenant’s rental history, including any prior evictions. An eviction record can be a significant red flag for landlords and may raise concerns about the tenant’s ability to fulfill their obligations as a renter. However, it is important to consider all factors and not make hasty decisions based solely on an eviction record.
What are eviction records?
Eviction records refer to the documented history of a tenant being forcibly removed from a rental property by a landlord or law enforcement due to a violation of the lease agreement or non-payment of rent. These records can include court documents, notices to vacate, and records of any related legal proceedings. Eviction records can have a significant impact on an individual’s ability to secure future housing and can affect their credit score.
How long does an eviction stay on your record?
The length of time an eviction stays on a person’s record can vary depending on the reporting practices of the credit bureaus and landlords. In general, evictions may remain on a person’s record for up to seven years. However, some landlords may still be able to access and view older eviction records through tenant screening services. It is important for individuals to regularly check their credit reports and dispute any errors to ensure that their eviction history is accurate and up-to-date.
How can you remove an eviction from your record?
There is no guaranteed way to remove an eviction from a person’s record, but there are a few steps that can be taken to potentially improve their chances of securing future housing:
- Challenge errors in the eviction record: If there are errors in the eviction record, individuals can dispute them with the credit bureaus. This may result in the removal of the eviction from their credit report.
- Seek legal remedies: In some cases, individuals may be able to have the eviction record sealed or expunged if there were legal issues with the eviction process or if the individual was a victim of illegal discrimination.
- Pay outstanding debts: If the eviction was due to non-payment of rent, paying any outstanding debts and reaching a settlement agreement with the landlord may result in the removal or amendment of the eviction from the person’s record.
- Provide positive rental history: Individuals can demonstrate their good rental history by providing positive references from landlords and consistently paying rent on time.
It is important to note that the effectiveness of these steps may vary and there is no guarantee that an eviction record will be removed.
What to do before renting to someone with an eviction record?
Before renting to someone with an eviction record, it is recommended to take the following steps:
- Verify the eviction record: Check the tenant’s credit report and verify the details of the eviction with the previous landlord. This will help you understand the circumstances surrounding the eviction and determine whether the tenant may be a good fit for your property.
- Consider all factors: Take into account the individual’s current financial situation and job stability, as well as their explanations for the eviction, to determine whether they are likely to be able to fulfill their obligations as a tenant.
- Obtain a rental application: Require the tenant to fill out a rental application and provide proof of income, employment, and identity. This information will help you make an informed decision.
- Ask for references: Request references from previous landlords, friends, or family members. Contacting these references will provide you with additional information about the tenant’s rental history and help you determine their suitability as a tenant.
- Consider alternative screening methods: Utilize tenant screening services, such as background checks or criminal records checks, to get a comprehensive understanding of the tenant’s rental history and background.
By thoroughly evaluating the tenant’s application, rental history, and current financial situation, landlords can make an informed decision and reduce the risk of future eviction proceedings.
How to Rent with an Eviction on your Record?
Finding a place to rent with an eviction record can be challenging, but there are steps that can be taken to increase the chances of securing housing:
- Be upfront about the eviction: Explain the circumstances surrounding the eviction to potential landlords and provide a written explanation to accompany the rental application.
- Offer to pay a higher security deposit: Offering to pay a higher security deposit may demonstrate financial stability and willingness to take responsibility for any potential lease violations.
- Provide references: Provide references from prior landlords, friends, or family members who can speak to the individual’s rental history and character.
- Demonstrate financial stability: Provide proof of employment and income to demonstrate financial stability and the ability to pay rent consistently.
- Consider alternative options: Look into alternative housing options such as a co-signer or roommate, or consider renting from private landlords who may be more flexible than large property management companies.
- Seek assistance: Consider reaching out to local housing agencies or non-profit organizations for assistance in finding suitable housing.
It may take time and effort, but individuals with an eviction record can still secure housing by being proactive and demonstrating their commitment to fulfilling their responsibilities as a tenant.
Renting to tenants with eviction records may require a little extra effort, but with the right steps, landlords can minimize the risk of future eviction proceedings and find a suitable tenant. By verifying the eviction record, considering all factors, obtaining a rental application, asking for references, and utilizing alternative screening methods, landlords can make an informed decision and create a successful rental experience for everyone involved. Ultimately, it is essential to strike a balance between protecting your property and providing fair housing opportunities for all prospective tenants.