Tenant Background Checks

Tenant Credit Reports, Criminal Checks & Eviction Reports

(Free for Landlords)

Pricing: What’s Free & What Costs Money?

 

    • Rental application: Free
    • Tenant credit report & nationwide criminal check: $29.95 total (charged to renter)
    • Nationwide eviction report: $9.95 (charged to renter)
    • Tenant ID & address history report: Free for first check, then $1.99

Full Tenant Credit Reports

SparkRental offers full credit reports, complete with credit score, debt summaries, payment history, public records such as bankruptcies and judgments, and more. 

No inspection required, either. Most independent landlords don’t want to go through the hassle of a site inspection by the credit bureaus in order to run credit reports.

As part of the process, we verify the applicant’s identity, too. We confirm they’re the person they claim to be in their rental application.

The prospective tenant approves your request electronically, and as soon as they do, the tenant credit reports are released to you. When the applicant approves your request, they’re charged directly for the credit report and other tenant screening reports.

Nationwide Criminal Background Checks

Want a violent ex-con living in your rental property? What about a sex offender? Or hey, how about a check fraud artist?

We have you covered, with our nationwide criminal background checks. Federal, state, and local criminal records — all compiled into one report.

And yes, we check the sex offender registry and terrorist watchlists.

Not only can criminal tenants be dangerous to you, they can be dangerous to neighbors. Physical danger aside, fraudsters who have stolen from others in the past hardly look trustworthy to pay your rent on time!

Nationwide Eviction Reports

Want to include eviction records with your tenant credit report and criminal background check? You can, and should.

We actually feel strongly that the eviction history report is the most important tenant background check of all. It gets to the heart of what you really need to know: whether a renter has ever violated their lease agreement before, and needed to be evicted.

Find out if your applicant has a clean rental history — or whether they’re a professional tenant bouncing from one lease to the next, staying as long as they can without being evicted.

Free Built-In Rental Application

Tenant screening starts with a detailed rental application. After all, what good is a credit report if you would never have accepted the renter anyway, based on their 90-pound pit bull?

Our rental application is 100% free (good start, right?). You can opt to include it at the same time you request the background screening reports (credit, eviction filings, and criminal background reports). Or you can just request the free rental application by itself! 

Just enter your applicant’s email address, they fill out the rental application online, and as soon as they finish we email you to let you know it’s ready for you to review.

Happy tenant screening!

What Do the Tenant Background Checks Cost?

Transparent pricing: refreshing, right?

Your potential tenant pays $29.95 for a dual rental background check that includes a both full credit report and nationwide criminal history check. You can optionally add a nationwide eviction history report, which costs your potential renter an additional $9.95

Here’s the rest of our landlord software pricing, for good measure:

  • Most Tools Free, the Rest Transparent

  • Fill Vacancies Fast

  • Online Rental Application
  • Full credit report with FICO score, nationwide criminal background check including sex offender searchFull Credit & Criminal Report Package
  • Nationwide Eviction Report
  • Posts your listing to Apartments.com, ForRent.com, Apartment Finder & more with one clickOne-Click Vacancy Advertising
  • Includes address history, SSN verification, and known aliases. First report free, then $1.99.Free Tenant ID Check ($1.99 after first)
  • Move-In & Leases

  • Free General Lease Agreement
  • State-Specific Lease Agreements
  • Edit the legal clauses directly (at your own risk, of course!)Direct Lease Clause Editing
  • Convert Rental Application to Lease
  • E-Sign & Store Signed Docs (state leases only)
  • Manage Rents & Finances

  • Online Rent Collection (ACH or credit card)
  • We report your tenant's rent history to the credit bureaus to incentivize them to pay on time every month!Rent Reported to Credit Bureaus
    report rent to credit bureaus
  • Fully integrated with online rent collection system, with manual entry features too. Income & Expense Ledger
  • Receipt Storage
  • Detailed financial reporting including: Income & Expense Reports, Live E-Payment Tracking, and Upcoming Scheduled Payment Reports.Financial & Tax Reporting
  • Simplified Management

  • Eviction notices for all 50 states, plus free landlord letters!State Eviction Notices & Tenant Letters
  • All landlord-tenant communications logged and recorded through a unique tenant portal.Maintenance & Communication Logging
  • # of Units
  • Premium Course Access

  • What you'll learn: how to double rental returns, while working half the hours. How to automate, delegate, and eliminate the most common work and expenses in managing rentals.Property Management Pro:
    Double Returns, Half the Hours
  • Free Account

  • $0 — Forever

  • Free for Landlord, Tenant Pays $29.95
  • Free for Landlord, Tenant Pays $9.95
  • $29.95
  • Tenant can pay by ACH (free) or credit card (they pay a 3.99% convenience fee)ACH Free for Both Parties
    (for credit card, tenant pays 3.99%)
  • Unlimited
  • $697 Included

Note: Any landlord can request tenant-authorized credit reports, no site inspection required.

Charge the tenant screening reports directly to the applicant, so you don’t even have to collect a rental application fee!

Tenant Screening 101 with Brian & Deni

Our co-founders Brian Davis and Deni Supplee review the six parts of the tenant screening process that landlords should do with every single applicant.

(Most are quick and easy!)

Frequently Asked Questions

Who pays for the tenant screening reports?

Prospective renters pay for the rental background check. It’s free for you as the landlord or property manager. 

How do you verify rental applicants' identities for tenant screening?

Very carefully. Let’s face it, with technological progress, we will see an advance in fraud. That makes identity verification a must in tenant screening reports. 

Our tenant background check screening service uses credit bureau Transunion’s identity verification for all rental applicants. This verification happens not only through the renter applicant’s identifying information (name, address, date of birth, Social Security Number, etc.) but also through their recent credit history and transactions.

SparkRental takes privacy and security extremely seriously.

What's the application process like for my renter?

Once you invite an applicant to complete a tenant background check:

    1. They receive an email with a link to where they can fill out their personal details.
    2. If you selected to include a rental application, the prospect provides information including their address history, employment history, any other income, assets, liabilities. They also supply references, along with their pets and vehicle information. All topped off with the names of all occupants, and an electronic signature providing authorization to run all tenant background checks.
    3. We ask them a series of questions provided by Transunion to verify their identity.
    4. They pay the screening fee and you receive copies of their tenant credit check, criminal report, eviction history report, and rental application.
Is the credit report pull a "hard inquiry" or "soft inquiry" for my renter? (E.g., does it ding their credit?)

The credit check is a soft inquiry on your applicant’s credit, so it doesn’t hurt their credit score, or even show as an inquiry on their report. 

My applicant has a good credit score. Do I really need to check references?

Yes, yes and did we say yes? A good tenant credit report score is an excellent measure. However, it should never be the only one.

How will you know if your renter applicant will take good care of the property? How do you know if your tenant applicant has a good, strong employment history? How do you know their rent payment history with previous landlords? A credit score will not provide these answers.

That is why we strongly urge landlords and property managers to not only speak to the current landlord but also the one before.

Make sure you ask these landlords questions such as:

    1. How did the applicant care for the property?
    2. Did you have to make any deductions from the security deposit?
    3. Did the renter cause any nuisance complaints?

Ask similar questions of their employer. Besides just income verification, ask other important questions like:

    1. How long was the prospective tenant employed?
    2. Do they show up for work every day?

The idea is to get as much background as possible to prevent problems later.

Can I print the rental application form?

Of course. We make it easy to save a PDF version of the rental application or print it directly. When viewing the online application, there is an option to “Download (PDF)”.

Do I need to have an onsite inspection to run credit reports?

No, unlike many other screening companies, you don’t need a site inspection by a consumer reporting agency. Since your prospective renter approves the screening package themselves, it counts as a consumer-initiated credit report. You don’t need to hassle with inspectors or other red tape. 

Where’s my criminal search and sex offender status for New Jersey & New York background checks?

The states of New Jersey and New York have banned property owners and property management companies from using criminal records in their screening criteria for rental decisions. By law, we cannot provide criminal background checks for prospective renters in these states. 

These states impose extremely tenant-friendly laws, beyond standard Fair Housing laws. As a general policy, we recommend real estate investors avoid states and cities with anti-landlord laws.

Free Background Check

Run a FREE housing & identity check!

Credit, criminal, eviction reports also available.

Cheat Sheet Inbound!

 

Not only do you get the free Security Deposit Cheat Sheet, but we'll also send you our free passive income mini-course. How's that sound?

You're in! Click here to download the security deposit cheat sheet

Real Estate FIRE Escape: What It Takes to Retire in 5 Years with Rentals

 

Want a plan to retire in 5 years? We won't tell you it's easy... but we will tell you how to do it.

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Never File Eviction Again: 3 Secrets to Getting Renters to Respect the Rules

 

Evictions are ROI-killers! We'll show you how to whip your renters into shape and prevent future evictions.

You're in! Click here to download our free rental application

Real Estate FIRE Escape: What It Takes to Retire in 5 Years with Rentals

 

Want a plan to retire in 5 years? We won't tell you it's easy... but we will tell you how to do it.

You're in!

Real Estate FIRE Escape: What It Takes to Retire in 5 Years with Rentals

 

Want a plan to retire in 5 years? We won't tell you it's easy... but we will tell you how to do it.

You're in!

Rental Application Inbound!

 

Not only do you get our free rental application, but we'll also send you our free passive income mini-course. How's that sound?

Awesome! Check your email to confirm to download :-)

Ready to Build Passive Income?

Ready to Build Passive Income?

 

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Ditch Your Day Job: Free 8-Video Course

 

Our brand new course on how to reach financial independence and retire early (FIRE) with rental properties is open for one week from Oct. 23-30!

You're in! Check your email for the link, or click here for the 1st video!

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