Next up in our tenant screening reviews is RentPrep, one of the industry’s most popular tenant screening options. The company behind RentPrep is Fidelis Screening Solutions, which started by running background checks for large property management companies. Later, the company introduced a screening service tailored to smaller property managers and landlords, which is how RentPrep was born.
RentPrep offers two packages that differ significantly in what they bring to the table. We love to see screening services offer distinct packages instead of just forcing you to buy the most expensive by leaving essential features out of the more affordable.
You already know about the first of RentPrep’s packages, because we already covered it in this review of the industry’s best background check service companies. RentRep’s first package is actually the SmartMove credit report. This is the “middle” package, SmartCheck Plus, which includes a full credit report, ResidentScore, Social Security number verification, address history, eviction history, national criminal and sex offender search, and bankruptcies. Judgment and liens reports are available as a paid add-on, as is income verification.
This screening package requires the applicant’s confirmation via email. It is therefore considered a “soft” inquiry that won’t affect the applicant’s score at credit bureaus.
The other package is called the RentRep Background Check. This package includes Social Security number verification, address history, evictions history, bankruptcies, and judgment and liens. The criminal/sex offender background check, credit report, and income verification are all available as paid add-ons.
This package is a cheap background check that differs from the SmartMove version in several ways. First, the credit report and criminal background checks are not included. However, its criminal background check covers all 50 states, as opposed to SmartMove’s 44, because it’s generated manually by FCRA-certified screeners.
This package does not require the tenant’s consent. It makes a hard credit inquiry, which may affect the applicant’s credit score. Since it does not require confirmation or permission from the prospective tenant, results are ready within an hour.
When you’re researching a prospective tenant, the best screening services from RentPrep differ in price. The SmartMove package retains its original price of $38 per screening. The judgment and liens add-on costs $4.95, while income verification is an additional $10.
The RentRep Background check costs $18 per screening. The criminal and sex offender search adds $4, the credit decision report is $9.95, and income verification is $10.
The beauty of RentRep is the variety of options it offers. You can opt for the less expensive package, which provides instant results but is considered a hard credit inquiry, or take the tried-and-true SmartMove package. With lots of affordable add-on searches at your disposal, you can determine just how much money you’ll spend on tenant screenings.