Historically, tenants provided property managers and owners with their social security number on a paper application. This information allowed the property representative to pull the credit and background. Today, we do not recommend this approach.
For security and safety, it is better to have the tenant initiate the report through their own dashboard. Here is why we believe this option is best:
(1) Security -- In order for you to pull the tenant's credit, they must provide you with personally identifiable information. This is not secure, because they are giving you their social security number (SSN). You do not want the risk of holding someone else's SSN and other personally identifiable information. You do not want this information on a piece of paper or anywhere that is not encrypted.
(2) Transparency -- The applicant should have access to the report and score. If you reject them based on credit, then it is a good idea for them to have visibility into why they were not accepted. In addition, they may be able to use this report for future rentals, rather than pulling credit again.
(3) Impact to Score -- When the applicant initiates the pull on their credit, it is considered a soft pull and will not affect their credit score (good news!). If the property representative initiates the pull on the applicant's credit, then their score will go down by 3 points (bad news!).
Again, it is better to have the tenant create an account on Hemlane and initiate the report. It saves you from the liability of holding information prone to identity theft and benefits the tenant on both their score and application transparency.
keywords: credit, security, score, credit score, SSN, ssn, social security number