Desmond Brown

LANDLORDS BEWARE (Part II)

10 August 2018
Desmond Brown

Last month I wrote about how a potential tenant fabricated information about her employer on an application to lease a home I had listed. When I called the company she said she worked for, the supervisor she listed on the application did not exist and no one knew who she was.

Just when I thought I'd seen everything, my team member Jennifer Scaife came across another sketchy scenario.  Jenn had a wonderful luxury condo unit listed for rent in our popular Liberty Village neighbourhood. An agent from another brokerage sent Jenn an offer package, complete with the rental application, a credit report with a score of 725 which is considered very good,  and the offer to lease at the full asking price.

As Jenn delved deeper into the application and offer, a few red flags popped up:

  • The potential renter wanted the lease in "his corporation's name". He said it was for tax purposes
  • When Jenn asked his agent for the applicant to personally guarantee the lease, the other agent balked, wondering why this was necessary.
  • The applicant also offered six months' rent in advance

As always, we do our due diligence on potential renters. Instead of relying on the credit report supplied by the other agent, Jenn submitted her own request to Equifax. Much to our surprise, the applicant's score came back at 442, not the 725 that was stated in the documents submitted to us. Jenn emailed the other agent, saying that we had some concerns about her client, especially the discrepancy in the credit scores. The other agent never replied.  

All of the other red flags, such as an attempt to put the lease in the corporation's name, the reluctance of the applicant to personally guarantee the rent , and the six months' advance payments proved to be warranted. This was a person who was obviously trying to pull one over on us and our landlord. For all we know, this person may have been trying to set up an Airbnb with our client's unit.

In the end, we found a legitimate tenant, with a steady job, good references,  and a strong, valid credit score.

Again, for all of your real estate needs, get in touch with me.
Have a safe and enjoyable long weekend,
Des