Vetting Tenants — How we protect the landlord’s interests.

What we look for in Northern Virginia renters

In Northern Virginia, Nesbitt Realty prefers to work with good renters. Here are some of the traits we seek out.

  1. A desirable tenant pays the rent on time every time. This means paying on or before the first, rather than at 5 pm on the 5th.
  2. A trustworthy renter has integrity. A reliable renter does not sneak in a co-renter or pet.
  3. A trustworthy renter is reasonably clean. A reliable tenant does not bring pests such as rodents and bugs.
  4. A good renter does not break the property or its systems.
  5. A good renter is courteous and easy to get along with. A trustworthy tenant understands the difference between a property manager and a hotel concierge.
  6. An ideal tenant doesn't annoy neighbors.
  7. A trustworthy renter complains when appropriate. Renters that don't report maintenance issues cost real estate investors money and cause problems for property managers.
  8. A reliable tenant doesn't gripe when it's not appropriate. This means that a desirable renter doesn't ask to upgrade functioning systems. A trustworthy renter doesn't expect more than the lease provides. An ideal tenant doesn't complain that an appliance doesn't work when the tenant doesn't know how to operate the appliance.
  9. A desirable tenant does not smoke in the home.
  10. A trustworthy renter is looking for a rental term that is as long as the real estate investor wants to rent the home.

So this is what we're looking for in a tenant, but how do we find renters who measure up to this standard? Experience has taught us that bad renters can appear as polite, nicely-dress, well educated people with good jobs. We have a nose for sniffing out difficult tenants.


Our Five Step Process

Fair Housing Laws and our conscience dictates that we do not judge people in Northern Virginia based upon appearance.  Experience has taught us that appearances can be very decieving. We do however judge potential renters based upon their track record and their actions. If a applicant is difficult with our staff from the start, they will probably be trying as renters. If a potential tenant makes false statements, we can expect them to be dishonest as a renter.  If a potential renter has a problem scrounging up certified fundsfor background fees and the first month of rent, we can expect that same applicant will have difficulty while they are in the rental.

But even when every action initially is good we still vet each potential tenant with a complete background check. Every potential renter and occupant must provide a government-issue photo identification. From there, as property managers we start our vetting process.

How we protect the landlord’s interests in Northern Virginia:Nesbitt Realty is committed to Fair Housing

  1. We Check The Applicant’s Credit History
  2. We Investigate The Applicant’s Criminal History
  3. We Investigate The Applicant’s Rental History
  4. We Look For Internal Consistency In The Rental Application
  5. We Want To Know If The Applicant Can Afford The Rent

Northern Virginia Rental Management Resources


Fundamental information regarding rental managment in Northern Virginia.

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Getting Started

Learn more about getting started with property management

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Find A Tenant

List your property to rent to find a great tenant in Northern Virginia fast.

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How does Nesbitt Realty keep track of income and expenses for landlords?

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An overview of fees associated with property management services in Northern Virginia

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How Nesbitt Realty vets tenants for our clients.

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What is a contingency reserve account?

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Where does Nesbitt Realty manage property?

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Who uses Nesbitt Realty management services?

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Call (703)765-0300 to speak to a property management specialist now.


Our recommendation

After the background check is reviewed we make a recommendation to the real estate investor based upon our experience as property managers in Northern Virginia and the information that we have verified. Ultimately the property owner decides if the risk is worth taking, but they make that decision based upon facts and our expert advice.

Do you need know more about our local real estate market?

Nesbitt Realty's Guide to Real Estate is a helpful resource for everyone who hopes to learn more about Northern Virginia and surrounding areas.  The Guide to Real Estate has information regarding what has sold and what is on the market, and some interesting facts that you may not be aware of.  And, our Guide features quite a few of the aspects of residing in Northern Virginia.  Definitely, all of this is interesting for purchasers and sellers, but property owners and tenants will likely also find these resources to be very informative.

Our Broker Will Nesbitt

Will Nesbitt
Will Nesbitt

"I am by nature a trusting person, but this business has taught me to verify every statement that a tenant makes. Scammers and bad tenants can sometimes give every appearance of being trustworthy and upright people. We never cut corners on background checks." ~ Will Nesbitt

Julie Nesbitt

real estate agent Julie Nesbitt

 I like tenants that pay on time. Late paying tenants cause extra work and unnecessary stress for landlords and property managers. ~ Julie Nesbitt