Should tenant checks show up Criminals?

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    Should tenant checks show up Criminals?

    Further to our complications with our last tenant, we have since found out that when our lovely tenant(tounge in cheek!) was on parole for fraud and deception at the time of signing check forms. The checks were carried out by a high street letting agency, would anything have come up regarding this if checks were done properly?

    We are about to go through TenantVERIFY for the next lot of checks but you can understand our faith has been some what shaken knowing that our 1st tenants came back with perfect checks. We plan to take out insurance this time and future tenant is know to us, but have made it very clear that unless checks are through and insurance is accepted then its a no go. better safe than sorry.
    Does anyone else have any experience of this happening to them? Also has anyone used TenantVERIFY?
    cetvr

    #2
    If you want to read my thread about my thieving tenant you will find it makes illuminating reading!

    http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums...ead.php?t=4707

    You say this new prospective tenant is known to you - well TAKE HEED because my thieving tenant was known to me and like a complete PRAT I didn't even bother with the checks! VERY VALUABLE LESSON LEARNT!!!

    Kind Regards

    J

    Comment


      #3
      Hi J
      Thanks, it is has taken a lot of convincing, and despite knowing your future tenant,it really means nothing which my husband agrees with now. Who does your checks?
      I will go to link.
      TY
      cetvr

      Comment


        #4
        I use the tenantverify from this site. They've been ok so far. Though be warned - just because somebody passes the credit checks it doesn't necessarily mean they are goin to pay the rent. One couple I had checked passed the checks absolutely no problem - but still left owing me nearly £2k!!!

        I have now started to take out rental insurance/guarantee as well. The couple of quid it costs each week is a small price to pay for peace of mind!!!

        Good luck anyway.

        J

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          #5
          That raises an interesting point for me actually. I notice on our buildings insurance, it states that occupant should not have a criminal record. We did wonder how to ask potential tenant - in the politest of ways of course!

          Also, just to digress slightly, Joanne, you seem pretty au fait with most aspects of landlording. Can you recommend any good insurance (ours is up for renewal)? Many thanks.

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks J

            I understand that some people just turn into bad tenants, but I feel that our tenant had all the predisposition(think I spelt it right), why aren't these things checked after all if he was on parole it would seem likely that he could have left the property at any time, courtesy of a police car. Plus wouldn't a record of employment reflect a prison term as he had only been released 4 months before moving in and had served 21 months?

            cetvr

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              #7
              Originally posted by DianeB View Post
              That raises an interesting point for me actually. I notice on our buildings insurance, it states that occupant should not have a criminal record. We did wonder how to ask potential tenant - in the politest of ways of course!

              Also, just to digress slightly, Joanne, you seem pretty au fait with most aspects of landlording. Can you recommend any good insurance (ours is up for renewal)? Many thanks.

              Hi Diane - I am by no means an expert on anything in relation to landlording (if I was I wouldn't have had the problems I've had to date). However, I do learn from my own mistakes (and don't mind learning from others which is why I am an avid fan of this site).

              I also like to learn and acquire knowledge for myself which results in hours (weeks in fact) of research (law etc). The old saying "you learn something new everyday" springs to mind.

              Re insurance - for buildings insurance I have a portfolio insurance with Letsure. This policy just allows me to add properties to it as I acquire them (they charge pro-rata til renewal). My last renewal was just short of £2k covering 4 properties (made up of 7 self-contained units/tenancies). Total market value of the properties is approx £500,000.

              This policy also covers accidental damage and liability insurance.

              If you are wanting to get a quote, Letsure's details are as follows:

              Tel 01628 581 505
              e-mail portfolio@letsure.co.uk
              web www.letsure.co.uk

              Hope this is of use. I'm sure other members will recommend others (and I do believe there is an insurance forum on this site if you want further advice).

              Kind Regards

              J

              Comment


                #8
                Joanne, thanks for that. I will be looking at new quotes over the next few days so I will give them a call.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by DianeB View Post
                  Joanne, thanks for that. I will be looking at new quotes over the next few days so I will give them a call.

                  Diane - if you discover anything of any interest please pm me with the details. Thanks.


                  Cetvr, re: the criminal situation - the tenant application form on this site does actually ask for such information. I suppose if the tenant lied on the form and the credit check (performed by the info on the said form) did not pick up on it at least you would have some sort of recourse. Maybe ground 17 on Housing Act amendment (1996 I think) could be used on a section 8 along with potentially ground 14 (Housing Act 1988). I know I used both these grounds on my recent claim for possession.

                  J

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Hi J and Diane

                    I have checked the form on site and this is the one that is currently with new prospective tenant. May be thick but I can't see were it has anything pointing out criminal proceedings, got the usual things but nothing about convictions appart from CCJ's. Also employment record seems to be a bit hit and miss after all our previous tenant was employed but there was nothing to say about his enforced 21 month break!

                    cetvr

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Cetvr - just had a chat with my business partner (who's a serving police officer) and he says that it may be to do with the Rehabilatation Of Offenders stuff. There would have to be a good reason to ask the question of whether the prospective tenant has a criminal record (eg. working with children) - CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT?

                      J

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Cetvr, you have certainly raised an interesting point with regards to criminal records (especially, on a personal note, as it could void my insurance cover).

                        I use Homelet and my last tenant was given a very high credit rating, yet he told me recently that there was a warrant out for his arrest due to non-payment of council tax years ago! (Wish he'd told me that before he moved into my house!) Although no actual criminal record against him, surely something should have showed up on his credit check.

                        Am going to look into this further and will get back to you if I have any joy.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by DianeB View Post
                          Cetvr, you have certainly raised an interesting point with regards to criminal records (especially, on a personal note, as it could void my insurance cover).

                          I use Homelet and my last tenant was given a very high credit rating, yet he told me recently that there was a warrant out for his arrest due to non-payment of council tax years ago! (Wish he'd told me that before he moved into my house!) Although no actual criminal record against him, surely something should have showed up on his credit check.

                          Am going to look into this further and will get back to you if I have any joy.

                          Diane, be careful not to misinterpret 'criminal' law with credit issues. A CCJ is very different from a criminal conviction! Though I suppose for the purpose of tenant checks they are inextricably (? spelling) linked.

                          I am very surprised that nothing showed up on his credit check though! I mean, where is our (landlords) protection against such failings? Almost not worth bothering with the checks in my opinion.... back to the rental guarantee/insurance again I presume!

                          I suppose the beauty of using something like TenantVERIFY is that if you are requesting insurance then I guess the checks would be far more stringent! If a defaulter slips through the net at least then the insurance company is going to have to 'cough up'! Just be sure to read the small print (like I didn't - to my cost).

                          J

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Homelet must have been happy because they gave me rent guarantee for him. It's the buildings insurance wording I'm wondering about. Because they stipulate that any tenants we have must not have a criminal record, I wonder how they expect us to find out? Oh well, too late to think about it now.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Evening Ladies

                              The thing is when it comes down to it we entrust our properties for payment in return, We allow people who have been "checked out"(use the term loosely!) to live in them. In our case we believe our tenant was on parole which I'm led to believe is release on licence when he filled in his application form. At any time he could have done something and instantly returned to prison. So does this mean his conviction was spent? he hadn't served his full sentance?
                              So does any one else think that some one who is out on parole for fraud and deception should be signing an agreement of this kind with out disclosure.

                              We enter into an agreement blindly despite having done checks yet the very information we need to prove our tenants are trustworthy is unavailable to us. Yet another thing against the LL.
                              cetvr

                              Comment

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