Tenant Referencing – How do I pass it?

Compliance Shield

Tenant Referencing – How do I pass it?

Tenant referencing is an integral and very much necessary part of any rental process. However, as a tenant seeking out a rental property, and passing the referencing process can be a daunting prospect. If you are soon to be, or are already in the process of being referenced, the expert team at Van Mildert have compiled the ultimate tenant referencing guide. We hope this will help potential tenants, with the do’s and don’ts for helping you pass your tenant referencing process quickly and effectively…

How does tenant referencing work?

First things first, when learning about your tenant reference it may be helpful to know how exactly the process works.

If you’re applying to move into a new rented home, most responsible letting agents will order a reference check on you. This is nothing to worry about — it’s the agent’s job to perform some basic checks to make sure you’re not using a fraudulent identity and that you’re roughly in the right area financially to pay the rent on time. This is important to the agent as they need to offer to the landlord only tenants who are likely to cause no problems.

Around 95% of reference checks come back totally fine. You’ll need to fill in a form and disclose a range of information, for example previous addresses and employment details, but it shouldn’t take long and generally there’s nothing to worry about. The process can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, but we normally aim for about a 24 hour turnaround.

Once you’ve filled in your application form we will perform a range of checks including verifying your employment (where applicable), and retrieving your credit score, etc. Once we’ve collected all of this information, assuming everything checks out okay, we’ll send a positive result back to your letting agent and they can start the process of moving you in to your new rental property.

Will I pass?

In short – yes! Tenant referencing is nothing to worry about and you will be pleased to know over 95% of reference checks come back completely fine. If you are feeling anxious about passing your referencing we have put together these top tips to follow…

Top tips for passing tenant referencing

#1 Work out your budget

First things first, it is essential that you work out what you can afford when selecting a property to rent. Before you fall head over heels for a property, work out your budget and how much you will be able to pay in rent every month. If you think that you will be unable to pass referencing based on your income and affordability of the property, you could be rejected or asked to provide a guarantor. Providing a guarantor simply gives peace of mind to the letting agent or landlord and ensures that the rent will be paid by a third party if the tenant were unable to pay.

#2 Be Honest

Being upfront with your letting agent and landlord from the outset is essential during this process. A poor credit history doesn’t mean that you will be automatically declined from an application, however, being dishonest and failing to disclose such would put you in bad light. It is always best to be proactive and ensure you landlord and letting agent known all relevant information about you during the referencing process. If you come across as honest and willing to disclose important information from the outset it will stand you in good stead and show you have integrity and are not deliberately trying to hide things. Honestly is always the best policy!

#3 Have Your Paperwork Ready

Having all relevant paperwork at the ready and handy will ultimately speed up the referencing process and make it less stressful. Competition for rented accomodation is fierce, so if you are able to be as swift as possible then this will be incredibly helpful for both yourself and the letting agent. Form of paperwork that may be helpful to have to hand includes:

  • Bank statements
  • Passport
  • Visa (if required)
  • Previous landlord references


Additionally, ensure they are all valid and up to date!

#4 Secure a Guarantor

As previously noted, a guarantor may be required at any point during the referencing process, therefore, it is advisable to have one secured before you begin. That way, if you should need one, you will have your guarantor’s details to hand and be able to present your landlord or letting agent with them accordingly. Be sure to keep your guarantor updates and informed in advance about your referencing process and if they will be required to give a reference. This will all assist the process running as smoothly as possible.

Contact Van Mildert

If you are feel uneasy about the tenant referencing process and would like to chat with one of our advisors, feel free to give us a call on 0191 256 0920. We are more than happy to help!