Interview questions

I have an appointment to meet/interview a potential tenant for my Section 8 investment property. I know I put the cart before the horse, but I now, I need to know what questions should I ask. It feels like my mind is drawing a big blank!!! HELP!!! :o

After they complete an application… right?
Then just go over those items and be specific about

  1. Why are you moving?

  2. Have you had any problemw with your previous landlords.
    (What type of problems)

  3. Income?

From what source

  1. How many people will be living in the property?

  2. Why did you choose this property?

Provide your maintenance requirement. (i.e) if anything goes wrong in the property, leaking faucets, etc( I would like you to call me immediately (or state what your requirements are for "problems)

Ask if they feel comfortable with that.

Ask them their expectations from you.

State your expectations for them during the rental period.

Do you have any questions?

Ask for a list of the addresses they have lived since they were 18, or at least the last 10 years and then follow up with that list and contact all previous landlors to find what type of tenant he/she is. The current landlord may lie to get rid of a bad tenant but all the previous landlords would have nothing to gain, so they may be more truthful if she is not a good tenant.

Thank you for your quick responses. Should I still have them fill out an application even if they are on Section 8? I know I sound ignorant here, but when it comes to this part of the process, I am!!! :-\

Yes, I would have them complete an application for your files

Where would I find a general app for renters?

Click here for rental forms

In NY section-8 re-inspects every 6 months, if something is wrong they give you a time range to get it right and if you fail to, their portion of the rent is suspended. So YES you definitely need to make the potential tenant fill out an application and follow up on the information she gives you. You don’t want a bad tenant that will destroy your apartment and cost you money just because you believe the rent is guaranteed. Always protect yourself and your property as much as you can, but also remember that even the best of us can be fooled sometimes.

eve32, you are so right.

tones, thanks for reminding me that I have great resources right here on this site!!! I forgot about those forms!!!


Thanks very much for this comment. It help me to think about my ideals.

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Tks again and pls keep posting.


Thanks very much for this comment. I was actually hired from another interview I had. I’m sure this thread will be useful for others though.

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The amount of damage a tenant can do every month can exceed the amount that you receive in rent.

I suppose there might be good tenants available on Section 8, but there are unquestionably some very bad tenants receiving Section 8. Drugs, filthy living, fights that break walls, criminal live-in boyfriends, loud, trouble with the neighbors, garbage thrown around…

If you are going to accept Section 8, you’d better be screening really carefully.

Specify how many people can live in the unit and if they exceed you will evict and have them removed from section 8 program which will mean they have to sign up again and wait.

One thing many people have noticed. The ghetto has gotten very demanding in these times and want more and more from everyone else. So be prepared for headaches since the govt giving so many freebies

ask them for references. you may also want to do a background check

Be careful about source of income. In some areas of the country, local ordinaces make source of income a protected class and using source of income to deny a tenant application is discrimatory in those jurisdictions. Make sure you know your local ordinances.

I usually just ask for income verification. I do that by having them bring in the last 2 paystubs. That keeps me out of asking where the money comes from.

Try the local real estate board. They should be able to provide you with a promulgated from from the Real Estate Commission.

I would try the local real estate board. they will have the proper forms for you.

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