TurboTenant’s tenant screening services provide some of the cleanest reports and best overall user experience in the industry. However, the prohibitive price will turn off some applicants, and the inclusion of only basic reports will dissuade many landlords.
Sample Reports: Standard Screening Report ($55),
What is TurboTenant?
TurboTenant is a tenant screening service that provides credit and background checks on rental applicants. While TurboTenant offers many resources for property managers, this review will focus on their tenant screening service.
TurboTenant Features and Facts
|Time to Get Results
|A few minutes after application is submitted
|Landlord or Tenant
|Type of Application
|Online through their portal
|Nationwide Criminal & Eviction Check
|Felonies & Misdemeanors
|SSN Fraud Check
|Sex Offender Check
|Yes, with annual membership
TurboTenant Pros & Cons
- Incredibly Simple Process – Everything for both landlords and applicants is streamlined with no extra steps.
- Beautiful Interface – One of the best designed landlord dashboards of any tenant screening service.
- Application and Tenant Screening Combined – Some services don’t capture thorough application information along with a tenant screening request. TurboTenant does this brilliantly.
- Only the Most Common Reports – You’ll get eviction, criminal, and credit reports, but nothing else—unless you pay a membership for an Income Insights report.
- Expensive for Applicants – Many applicants won’t follow through because of the $55 cost (although that can be lowered to $45 if landlords pay $99 per year).
TurboTenant Screening Pricing
|$99 per year, $45 per report
|Standard Package plus
Here’s how TurboTenant’s process looks for creating the application, filling out the application, viewing the landlord’s dashboard, and going over the reports.
1. Create Application
First, you’ll create a landlord account:
You’ll then continue on through their (beautifully-designed) account creation process:
It’s nice to see that TurboTenant has several resources for property managers, but we’ll go ahead and click “Screening” here.
Then, you’ll come to a simple screen where you’ll add your unit’s address:
You’ll see a little preview of what their screening reports look like, as well as the cost. It’s pricey at $55 per applicant, which may turn off some of your potential renters (if you’re having them pay for it).
You’re a bit limited in that you can only send an email invite rather than having a link to put online. However, TurboTenant’s screening process doesn’t incorporate a full application process, so they assume you’ve already gathered your applicant’s information, making sending an email invite the logical choice.
Next, you have to comply with TransUnion’s requirements to be able to have screening reports sent to you:
For this walkthrough, we selected the $55 option:
2. Tenant Application Process
TurboTenant offers the ability to send an invite for just tenant screening or for a full application with the tenant screening. We love when tenant screening services provide this option In this example, we sent an invite for a full application plus screening:
Right away, the applicant is told what’s to be expected—with the price mentioned here being especially noteworthy. Some applicants will likely leave at this step.
The applicant then creates an account and adds some basic information:
Then, the applicant can put in desired move-in date, co-signers, and total property residents.
Now, landlords can collect residential history as well as contact information for landlords:
Up next is employment information, including employer contact information:
Does the applicant have any other sources of income?
Now, we’ll collect some general information, with the ability to expound on certain answers:
Now, the applicant will see one of the most important steps: background information. If the applicant has had any issues with evictions, convictions, or bankruptcies, they can explain the situation here. This allows the landlord to see if there are any extenuating circumstances before throwing aside an applicant.
Next, the applicant adds their emergency contact:
This next step should be standard among all tenant screening services, as adding these documents goes a long way to verifying your potential tenant’s information.
Finally, we get to the payment page:
This is a bit of a long process, but it should be a long process to gather the relevant information. It’s done about as seamlessly as we’ve seen from other tenant screening services. However, they do omit gathering personal references, but those are less important than employer and past landlord references.
3. Landlord Report View
In line with everything else by TurboTenant, the reports are easy to navigate. Everything looks clean:
Most tenant screening companies provide immediate reports, but TurboTenant takes a few minutes to give you theirs. It’s not a big deal, but rather a slight inconvenience.
4. Credit Report
First, landlords get this excellent screen to summarize the credit report:
This is followed by address history and current employment:
Now, landlords will see a summary of the tradelines (or credit accounts). This person has 33, which seems like a lot, however these reports show closed tradelines as well as open ones. Furthermore, student loans often show up as many different smaller accounts.
The most important information on this view is to see the “Total” under the “Payment” column. This tells the landlord how much the applicant pays per month in debt payments. From there, you can calculate an accurate debt-to-income ratio—which is far superior to rent-to-income.
Here’s a summary of total debt:
Next, you’ll be able to see information on any specific tradeline. For example, here’s one for a mortgage. You can see how much is owed each month, the remaining balance, as well as their history of on-time vs late payments.
5. Criminal & Eviction Reports
Per usual, these reports are very simple, however, TurboTenant manages to display in a cleaner way than most:
Should You Use TurboTenant?
TurboTenant allows landlords to easily order screening reports, and the process couldn’t be simpler for the applicant as well. The price is higher than most other services, meaning that many of your applicants will likely choose to apply elsewhere. Reports include the basics, but nothing more.
Overall, while they have a good service, landlords can find more complete options at a better price in the marketplace.
TurboTenant Frequently Asked Questions
These are the most common questions asked about TurboTenant:
1. Is TurboTenant a Legitimate Site?
TurboTenant is a legitimate site and service. They’ve had over 500,000 landlords use their rental management and tenant screening services.
2. Does TurboTenant Run a Hard Credit Inquiry?
Credit checks from TurboTenant are done via soft inquiry and will not affect the applicant’s credit score.
3. Are TurboTenant’s Tenant Screening Reports Accurate?
Powered by TransUnion, TurboTenant’s reports are thorough and accurate.