The TransUnion SmartMove report is a great resource that gives you a Resident Score that shows how reliable your tenant is likely to be. As a landlord or agent, it can be difficult to make an educated decision on how to find good tenants to rent your property.
After you have gathered your completed applications, you need to filter the applicants by screening them according to your own criteria. Whether you choose to accept pets or impose other conditions on renters, always bear in mind the Fair Housing Act, then you can use your criteria as your first level of sorting. It is important to remember that when you get to the stage of tenant screening serious contenders to rent your property that you must apply the same standards across the board regardless of ethnicity, family status, or sexuality. Tenant screening is an essential part of minimizing the risk of renting out a property.
To set up the Transunion Smartmove screening process, all you have to do is supply the tenants' email address, and they are then sent the screening request, which they must accept to start the process. An in-depth report that gives the details of their credit report and criminal background is produced, and along with the other information is collated into the final report. You will also get a recommendation from Smartmove on what they consider the tenant score to be. If for whatever reason, the applicant declines the request, then their personal information will go no further, and their rental application will be canceled. The last step in the Smartmove process is for you to fully evaluate the report before the software notifies the renter of your decision.
What is Included in a SmartMove Report?
The Resident Score number is reached by TransUnion, examining the data and applying their SmartMove formula to the information that your prospective tenant provides. It is easy to set up by the landlord or agent, all you have to do is send the renter’s email address, and SmartMove will prompt them to complete the online process. The Transunion SmartMove shows credit reports, criminal background checks, national eviction checks, income estimates, and SmartMove’s trademarked Resident Score, and once your tenant has completed their part, you will be able to see the results very quickly.
One of the strong positives of SmartMove report is that it is accessible for review online at any time, and is processed in mere minutes. You’ll have a prospective tenant’s Resident Score and be able to make a decision on who to rent your property to quickly and simply. A downside of the quick processing time of the TransUnion report, is that it does not cover Colorado, Massachusetts, Delaware, South Dakota, and Wyoming as instant background reports are illegal in these states.
It is essential to find good tenants, and you need to have as much information as possible at your fingertips. So, What does Transunion SmartMove show that will assist you in your decision?
The Resident Score is the key indicator in the SmartMove report, and it is determined using the same information that is used to generate a credit score, but they use their formula to give a number between 350 -850. The TransUnion formula is designed to predict the risk vs. the reliability of a prospective tenant, and their ‘rental performance’. According to TransUnion, they can predict evictions 15% more reliably, and an early ending to the lease 19% more reliably than a credit score alone.
TransUnion is one of the major credit bureaus, so with the SmartMove report, you will, of course, also receive a credit report, which gives an indicator of your renter’s financial reliability and spending habits. The SmartMove report is designed to be as clear and easy to understand as possible, and the credit report helps with this. You want easily digestible information presented in a clear format, and this is exactly what the SmartReport does so well, all of the information is formatted for mobile or computer, and wherever you have a connection, you can check the report.
What does TransUnion SmartReport show in terms of detail in the credit report? Well, the report is so comprehensive that you’ll be able to see when and to whom any late payments were made as well as the total number of payments made late. Digging deep into the details is a great way to be able to approve or reject potential tenants based on data.
The SmartMove report also shows a prospective renter’s eviction history. Unfortunately, it is likely that if a tenant has been unreliable in the past that they will be again in the future. TransUnion searches through a vast amount of information, from credit history, and address databases to eviction information and also presents an informative sidebar that answers common questions about evictions. The report also shows the details of the court case that preceded the eviction and any other worrisome behavior such as whether there is a previous history of Unlawful Detainers, Tenant Judgments for Rent, and Criminal Behavior.
You need to protect both the property and your financial security when considering tenants, and you need to know that you’re entrusting the house or apartment to the right person. You can avoid worrying about potential damage and neighbor issues by checking the criminal section provided in the SmartMove report, although this is not available in the five states mentioned above.
The criminal background check is thorough and is a useful resource in deciding whether you have found the right tenant or not. TransUnion checks over 370 million criminal records, as well as a variety of databases, such as the Most Wanted, and the National Sex Offender Public Registry, and collates the information into an easily understandable report.
In the initial TransUnion SmartMove screening questions the prospective renter is asked about their level of income, the report verifies this information with a tool called Income Insights, which takes the credit check information and estimates a salary range. The Income Insights section of the TransUnion SmartReport is only available as part of the premium package.
It is up to you to check the income information independently as this screening can only make an educated guess according to the spending, and credit line data it has access to. While you aren’t going to get a guarantee of a tenant’s salary this way, it’s a nice extra to have in the report. It adds to the bigger picture and gives you an idea of whether the self-reported income matches the spending behavior. Keep in mind that if the tenant has very little credit information available, then an Income Insights report might not be available at all.
TransUnion is a well-regarded company, and the Smartmove Report is well respected in the Real Estate Industry. It offers a lot of essential Tenant screening features which are very useful such as the credit check, and the Resident Score. However, it does not offer document uploading or reference checking, or a rental application service, which means that you will have to rely on other providers for a wraparound service.
3 Common Questions Regarding A TransUnion SmartMove Screening Report
1. What is a TransUnion SmartMove ResidentScore?
This is a type of credit score that is specifically designed for tenant screening services from TransUnion. Here are some reasons that a TransUnion SmartMove ResidentScore is the way to go:
- The Resident Score uses, at a minimum, the same information that's factored for a FICO Score or any other credit score.
- The Resident Score analyzes resident records and uses additional rental data tailored for resident screening and rental history. It is a better predictor of rental outcomes.
- Traditional credit scores are used to predict the outcome of a loan, not rental performance.
- The Resident Score is designed specifically for tenant verification by TransUnion.
- Uses a traditional 350-850 range for the score.
2. Do SmartMove screening reports expire?
The SmartMove screening report expires after 30 days, this is a regulation from TransUnion to protect an applicant's personal data.
3. Does the TransUnion credit report damage my credit score?
TransUnion SmartMove uses a soft credit inquiry for its screening reports. It will not impact or damage your credit score.