Property Management Blog

The Uptown Screening Process

Uptown Properties - Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Here at Uptown Property Management we hold ourselves to the standards of both equality and quality when it comes to our tenant screening and acceptance process. We do this by setting a consistent standard of criteria that all tenants must fall within and maintain and then we make sure hold all tenants to this without exception. To create these standards we make sure to consult with the property owner so that the criteria can give peace of mind about anyone that will rent their property. The objective metrics we use for our assessments are credit score, income, and rental history. Using these metrics allows for tenant screening without any discrimination based on identify and ensuring that we dont waver from these guarantees that no exceptions are made due to human biases. The City of Portland is currently working on making a city wide tenant standard to ensure city wide equality showing that our best practice is on the forefront of the industry. 

The first and easiest step in the screening process is the credit score check. All of our applicants must apply online which allows for an instantaneous credit check informing us if we need to continue with the screening process. Our credit standard is 675 which will get an instant auto approval provided the rest of the criteria is passed. This is because those with a credit score this high have shown that they will and can consistently pay their dues which indicates that they will be an excellent tenant that is unlikely to default or miss payments. These applicants will be moved on fast.The median to low range is between 575 and 675. This indicates to Uptown Property Management that this applicant has had some hiccups in their transaction history or that financial obligations are not their top priority in life. As such they will be still considered but are considered to be more of a risk for the owner. Those with a credit score below 575 have shown a lack of attention to their credit score and as such will likely have a difficult time meeting their financial obligations. These are grounds for an automatic denial regardless of a cosigner.

Along with the instant credit check that the online application allows, a background check is also completed. For this we have a strict set of non permissible offenses that are all grounds for immediate denial of the application. After 7 years offenses are expunged, provided no recurring offenses, thereby preventing our ability to screen against their history. Convictions of misdemeanors and felonies will be considered but may require twice the security deposit stated provided that they are not on the immediate denial list.

After these critical screening steps, an income and rental history check is performed. This is done by applicant submission of tax returns, pay stubs, or a W-2 form and by contacting the landlords from the last two years. Tenants are allowed a cosigner for the income that must present the same verification of income. 

The last facet of our quality and equality measures is in how we prioritize and organize the application priority. This comes into play when we have two completed applications with the second one having a sooner move in date than the first. For the sake of minimizing vacancy and thereby increasing the profits for the owner, we will opt for the sooner move in date but only after giving the first applicant the option to move in on the same day or sooner. We then direct the first set of applicants to submit the needed information to Virtually Incredible, our screening service, and then proceed to send them the lease. We keep a strict timeline and if the process ever stalls then the second application will be prioritize the initial applicant will be directed to other potential properties.

Though all of his process we attempt to exude quality and equality for both our tenants and our owners through our professionalism and transparency. We hope that this breakdown of our leasing structure helps clarify any questions and affirms your faith in Uptown Property Management.