Secrets to Being a Successful Landlord: Getting the Right Tenants

Having the right tenants is one of the most important parts of being a successful landlord.

With the right people in place, being a landlord can be plain sailing. However, get things wrong, and your investment property dreams can quickly turn into a nightmare, littered with missed rent payments, damaged property and costly court battles!

Ensure that you get the right people for your properties by following the tips in this guide!

What makes the perfect tenant?

Whilst there are lots of things you might want to look for, the key characteristics of a good tenant are:

  • Pays rent on time
  • Looks after your property
  • Doesn’t cause you problems
  • Doesn’t sublet the property
  • Doesn’t upset the neighbours

If your tenants do this, you know you’ve got good ones!

The value of vetting

Keeping your properties occupied is one of the key aspects of being a successful landlord – but rushing the tenant vetting process can be extremely costly.

You might think that you’re a good judge of character, but beware. Recent research from the Residential Landlords Association has shown that landlords who fail to do background checks on their tenants are 7 times as likely to end up taking court proceedings!

Tenant referencing checklist

Effective tenant referencing is the best way to ensure that you get the right people in your property. This might include:

Bank referencing

Checking with the bank, and taking a look at the tenant’s last 3 months of bank statements will give you a good idea as to whether they can afford to rent your property.

Employer referencing

Most landlords prefer their tenants to be in full time employment – checking with an employer to confirm the salary and contract duration of prospective tenants is a good way to assess affordability.

Previous landlord reference

Checking with a prospective tenant’s current or previous landlord is a great way to ensure that they’re the right fit for your property. In addition to the financial side, it’s also a chance to check whether they have looked after the property, and how they behave in general.

Just be careful – unscrupulous landlords may want to get rid of problem tenants, and a glowing reference can be a sneaky way to pass their problems on to you!

Personal reference

A personal reference from a friend or colleague can provide you with some reassurance as to the character of your prospective tenants. Just take it with a pinch of salt – friends are unlikely to provide you with any negative information!


Getting a guarantor for your tenants adds an extra layer of security – in the event that your tenants are unable to pay their rent, the guarantor will be legally obliged to cover it.

Remember – a Guarantor is not a guarantee

Guarantors are valuable tools to ensure that you’re not left out of pocket should your tenant be unable to pay.

However, whilst having a qualified guarantor in place does provide some protection – it should be seen as insurance, rather than a substitute for proper tenant vetting!

The single most effective way to minimise problems is to do a thorough background check and vetting process with every tenant.

How Lime can help

Struggling to find the right, high quality tenants, who’ll look after your property and pay their rent on time? At Lime Property, we’ve got you covered – with a comprehensive tenant vetting service proven to generate real results.

We offer a fully tailored lettings service – designed to provide landlords with property across Hull and East Yorkshire with the right level of high quality support they need.

Whether you’re looking for one-off online advertising or a full portfolio management service, you’ll benefit from expert, value added support from experienced teams, dedicated to helping you get maximum value from your investment.

For additional information about how Lime Property can help you, or for a free, no obligation chat, call 01482 216060 today.