Even short-term renters should be screened

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Q: We have short-term renters in our vacation unit in Palm Springs, Calif. They rented for one month with the option to extend for two more. As soon as they moved in, they began providing lists of what they considered was wrong with the unit. Some were legitimate, others were ridiculous -- such as the icemaker was providing only crushed ice and they needed cubed, etc. They told us they wanted to extend a second month but then did not pay the rent. After being served with a legal notice to pay rent by our attorney, they did pay. The attorney also found that they have been evicted 15 times in the past six years in Palm Springs. I contacted some of their prior landlords and learned that their scam is always the same. They tell every landlord that they have been "ripped off" by unscrupulous landlords and had to threaten to sue or withhold rent to get repairs made, etc. Some of the prior landlords just let them leave without paying the rent, so it would appear t...