Symptoms of a subpar tenant

Warning signs: failure to prove identity, creditworthiness

Q: I own a rental house about 50 miles from where I currently live. The tenant vacated a few months ago and I had received barely any calls from rental prospects until a prospective tenant contacted me about a month ago.

I met him at the property with a blank lease form, but I forgot the rental application that also includes a section to fill out for credit. He seemed very nice and so did his family, so I felt comfortable renting the home to them.

I explained that I needed some basic information, which we used to complete the lease form, and we both signed the lease with the intent that he and his family would move in at the beginning of next month.

Later, I emailed him the rental application form to fill out so I can complete my tenant screening, but he has been very evasive. He will not give me any information about his job, his banking relationships or his credit cards. He won’t even give me his Social Security number or driver’s license number to allow me to verify that he is the person he says he is.