General Member Information
PLEASE READ THIS INFORMATION THOROUGHLY BEFORE YOU START CHECKING ON APPLICANTS
Hours of Operation
Although you can send us a request by email or fax us an application anytime, LLC normal hours of operation are:
8:00 am - 4:00 p.m. (Mon - Fri)
Closed weekends and major holidays (New Years Day, Memorial Day, July Fourth, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas).
Well try to get you an answer as soon as possible, but you will ALWAYS GET A RESPONSE THE SAME DAY if you send in your request before 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Inquiries received after 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and on weekends and holidays will be returned by noon the next business day.
Credit Cards Accepted
LLC accepts Visa, Mastercard and Discover. You can request that we bill your credit card on the 1st of each month for any inquiries you requested during the previous month. Just call LLC and provide your credit card number and expiration date, well do the rest!
LLC reserves the right to refuse inquiries from members who have not paid their outstanding balance within 45 days from billing date. Effective June 1st 2013: We expect all invoices to be paid within 30 days. All invoices not paid within 30 days from billing date will be subject to the following:
45 days late - $5.00 late fee
60 days late - Credit hold. No reports completed until outstanding balance is paid. May require payment by credit card for all reports.
Over 90 days – Account placed in collections and cancellation of membership without option for renewal.
Note: If your account is in arrears prior to June 1st 2013, you have until June 30th 2013 to avoid collections and membership cancellation. Please call us to make payment arrangements.
Personal Identification Numbers (PIN)
Your PIN is located on your copy of the membership agreement. ALWAYS reference this number whenever you contact LLC for inquiries (by fax or email).
DO NOT GIVE YOUR PIN NUMBER TO ANYONE OTHER THAN LLC AND DO NOT CHECK ON TENANTS FOR YOUR RELATIVES, NEIGHBORS, FRIENDS, ETC. YOUR NAME IS LISTED IN THE PERSONS FILE AS HAVING MADE AN INQUIRY ON THEIR CREDIT. THIS IS ILLEGAL AND COULD PLACE YOU IN JEOPARDY IF A TENANT REQUESTS A COPY OF THEIR FILE AND IT SHOWS YOUR NAME AS HAVING REQUESTED INFORMATION. LLC RESERVES THE RIGHT TO CANCEL MEMBERSHIP IF THIS PRACTICE IS DETECTED.
Where are the Forms?
You can access the forms you need at the following web address.
Please add this link to your Favorites as it is not accessible from our Main Website.
How to Check on an Applicant
Its easy. There are two ways you can check: either by email or fax.
NOTE: Calling in your requests by phone is not allowed.
You can send your requests by fax at 603-424-4032 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
To send requests by email or fax, include:
Reports requested before 2pm will be returned same day. Reports requested after 2pm will be returned by noon the next business day. Business Hours: 8am 4pm Monday through Friday.
Add the PIN Number AFTER the tenant fills out the application. DO NOT LET UNAUTHORIZED PEOPLE KNOW YOUR PIN NUMBER.
Fax the rental application (front and back). We cannot check on an applicant without their signature.
LLC will search its database for information on the applicant, and compare the current and previous addresses and landlords against our listings.
We will then send you a fax or email notifying you of the applicants rental history.
WHEN YOU CHECK ON AN APPLICANT, PLEASE KEEP ALL APPLICATIONS ON FILE FOR 24 MONTHS. PERIODIC AUDITS ARE COMPLETED ON OUR CUSTOMERS. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE THE APPLICATIONS AVAILABLE YOUR SERVICE IS SUBJECT TO SUSPENSION.
Rental Application Process
The rental application is the most important step in the rental process. This is probably the only time that your prospective tenants will willingly give you personal information about themselves, and you should take full advantage of this opportunity. LLC has developed rental applications by taking the best parts from many other landlords applications. Feel free to use our rental applications. You can personalize them by putting your name or your companys name at the top, and then make copies, or you can take portions of our application and add them to your own. Here are some guidelines to follow when you are accepting applications for a rental unit:
Get complete information on all adults who will be living in the apartment.
If you have rental agreements or leases, make all adult occupants 100% responsible for payment of the rent. This also covers you during the eviction process if additional occupants later claim that they are legal tenants.
When you are doing an eviction, list all tenants on the L&T Writ, so that all of their names will go into the District Court files. Make sure that the names are complete and spelled correctly.
Lets take you step-by-step through the application process:
Applicant Name ¾ Get their full name, including middle initial and Jr., Sr., III, etc. Have each adult fill out a separate application.
Maiden name ¾ A woman may have had L&T Writs filed against her under her maiden and married names. Some have been married numerous times and have a number of names. On page 2 of our rental application we ask for names of all people living in the apartment, especially children. The childrens last names may give you a clue as to any other last names the woman may have used in the past.
Date of birth, Social Security Number, Drivers license number ¾ Very important! Please verify this information when the applicant shows you their drivers license. If they dont have a drivers license ask for another type of picture ID. You must verify the identity of the person to whom you are about to rent. Immigrants without a Social Security number have a number assigned to them by the Immigration Naturalization Service. Put that number in place of the Social Security number. Immigrants must have a Social Security Number in order to get a job, so if they are working, they have an SS#. The SS# is automatically on a persons drivers license unless they request that it be deleted.
You can legally ask for an applicants Social Security Number because you may need to open a separate bank account for that tenants security deposit. By opening a separate account for each tenant you dont have to pay income taxes on the interest from tenant security deposits.
Current & Previous Addresses and Landlords ¾ BEWARE!! Applicants can get very creative when completing this part of the application. They usually put the correct address but if theyre in the process of being evicted, they will put a friend down as the landlord. When you call the "landlord" for a reference, ask the person whether they have any apartments for rent. If the answer is "I dont own any apartments" or "You must have the wrong number!" You know that youre not talking to a real landlord. LLC can help verify the owner of a property in all major cities and sometimes in other parts of the state.
Another cover-up is "Im living with friends now" or "We just moved here from out of state." Check their references and employment. How long have they been working at their present job? You can even pay them a surprise visit at their present apartment. This can really verify what kind of people they are.
Have you ever been brought to court by a landlord or brought the landlord to court? The standard answer is no. LLC will verify this information for you.
In case of emergency, notify If they skip out, you have another person to possibly help you locate them.
The Credit Release You need the applicants written permission to check on their credit file. Without it you are violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act and may also be subject to future legal action by the applicant. Make sure that the applicant and co-applicant sign the written release so you can check on both of them with LLC. Remember that your name will go into that persons file as an inquiry. Do not let your friend or relative use your PIN Number. LLC occasionally audits our customers and anyone caught checking on an applicant for another person will be suspended without notice.
Verification At the end of the application is the verification section. You should take their picture ID (preferably a drivers license) and print their name, address and other information as it appears on the ID. As you check their landlord and employment references you can either put "OK" if they check out, or "False" or "NoVer" if a false landlord or address is given or you are unable to verify the reference.
The address on their ID should appear on the application as a present or previous address. A space is available at the lower right hand corner for you to photocopy the ID onto the application if you have a copying machine available.
Interpreting LLC Files
LLC has two types of files: Landlord and Tenant (L&T) case dockets and and reports from other landlords. We have access to evictions and criminal reports for all 50 states
Eviction Process - What is an L&T filing?
To understand, lets quickly review the eviction process:
The landlord serves the Demand for Rent and Eviction Notice to the tenant (7 days).
ON THE 8th DAY!! The landlord then purchases the L&T Writ at the District Court for $1.00 and brings it to the Sheriff who sets a return date on the L&T Writ (usually 14 days). The Sheriff serves the L&T Writ to the tenant, and mails a copy to you. Check with your County Sheriff's office for the cost of having them serve the LT writ.
You file the L&T Writ with the District Court along with the filing fee (currently $100.00) by the return date on the Writ.
At this point, a case number is assigned, and your case becomes public record and part of LLC files. A district court docket provides the following information: Case number, Filing date, Case disposed date, Landlord name, Tenant name and District Court where filed.
If the tenant filed an action against the landlord under an RSA 540:A, the landlord would be the defendant in that case. A (D) will appear after the landlords name to show he was the defendant in that case.
Due to the court systems computer programming limitations, the reason why the L&T was filed or who won the case is not available from every court at this time. However, it is safe to assume that the majority of cases are filed for non-payment of rent and that the landlord wins most of the cases. District Courts will allow you to look at the complete file on a particular case upon request. If there is any question, you should independently verify L&T docket information with the court.
You can also call the landlord who filed the L&T Writ. If the we can locate the landlord's phone number we will include it on your report. Our subscribers are required to report truthfully to each other. This is one of the features that will make LLC effective.
Points to keep in mind about L&T Filings
A single L&T filing in a persons file
If you automatically reject a prospective tenant due to a single L&T filing, you could lose out on a good tenant. Heres why:
An L&T filing against a tenant may not be a poor reflection on that tenant, especially if that filing was by a bank, mortgage company or the FDIC.
When banks, mortgage companies, and the FDIC foreclose on apartment buildings they routinely evict every tenant in the building whether or not they were current on their rent. This is done to avoid dealing with housing code violations or to avoid lead paint abatements.
A tenant may also have had a legitimate disagreement with their landlord and, as a result, had a L&T Writ filed against them. The case may have even been decided in the tenants favor.
The tenant may have fallen behind on their rent and had an L&T Writ filed against them. They then caught up on their back rent and stayed with that landlord for a period of time, always paying their rent.
More than one L&T filing
When an individual has had a number of L&T filings against them, this may indicate a poor rental history. Sometimes a person has several L&Ts filed against them by the same landlord. This may show a pattern of late payments.
Remember, LLC provides you with the information; you decide whether or not to rent to that person.
No L&T filings
This doesnt automatically mean a good tenant. The landlord may have issued a notice to quit and had an L&T Writ served to the tenant, who then moved before the landlord had to actually file the Writ with the court with the filing fee. You should verify the tenants references with past & present landlords and also any former landlords provided by LLC.
Landlord Reporting Forms
This is the other part of our records. Landlords can report good or bad tenants with the Landlord Reporting Form. As our membership grows, so do our files regarding landlord reports. Adverse information provided to LLC on the Landlord Reporting Forms will remain in a tenants file for seven years.
WE CANNOT INCLUDE REPORTS IN OUR DATABASE WITHOUT A TENANTS SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER OR A DATE OF BIRTH (AT LEAST ONE IS REQUIRED.)
Paperwork! Paperwork! Paperwork!
You are legally responsible for the information you report to LLC. Save all rent receipts, rental applications, and rental agreements and paperwork regarding the tenant. When reporting rent owed be sure to deduct the security deposit. Dont report anything that you cant prove in a court of law. A court judgment will be necessary for claims other than actual rent owed. Please include a copy of the court judgment with your Landlord Reporting Form. Court judgments are highly recommended for rent owed as well as damages.
Landlord Verification Form (not included on our site)
A tenant may at some point challenge your information. If they do, LLC will then send you a Landlord Verification Form. You can then verify the original report as follows:
If the tenant has paperwork to back up his challenge of your report such as rent receipts, etc., you will need to have evidence to prove your information. If there is any reasonable doubt of the accuracy of the report, we will delete the information to protect both LLC and you from any civil liability. However, if the information is proven correct, it will stay in the tenants file. The tenant is then allowed to include their side of the story (up to 100 words) into their file.
Reporting Good Tenants
LLC encourages you to report good tenants by entering $0 for rent and damages and describing the tenants virtues in the "additional comments" section of the form.
Reporting an Eviction in Progress (EIP)
If you want to report an EIP, you can fax LLC a copy of the L&T Writ after the sheriff has served them and before the date you file the L&T with the court. You can also fax LLC a copy of the L&T Writ after you file it with the district court along with the filing date. This will also verify a late payment history.
Declination Letter - VERY IMPORTANT TO COMPLY
The declination letter is your formal denial of an apartment to the applicant. To simplify compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) for our subscribers, LLC provides a declination letter that requires a minimal amount of work on your part.
The FCRA and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA) require that if you deny an applicant an apartment or credit based on information provided by LLC that you shall provide the applicant with the reasons for the denial and the name of the consumer reporting agency that provided you with the report (LLC).
Reasons for Denial other than LLC Information (Adverse Action Letter)
Denial for reasons other than LLC information do not require our declination letter. You may have denied the applicant for one or more of the following reasons:
Incomplete information - necessary item(s) on the application were left blank
Failure to sign the application
Failure to provide a picture ID upon application
Insufficient landlord or personal references
False information on the application, such as present and current addresses, landlords name and telephone number
Apartment rented to another applicant with better references, higher income, or to someone who had applied earlier
If none of these reasons for denial apply, and the denial is based on information provided by LLC, you are required to send the applicant a declination letter.
Completing the Declination Letter
Credit History - If you are denying an applicant based solely on their credit report, do not refer them to Landlord Connection. Refer them to Equifax which is also listed.
Send the declination letter to the applicant within 30 days of your decision to deny the apartment.
Keep a copy of the letter on file for 60 months along with the rental application.
IMPORTANT: FAILURE TO KEEP APPLICATIONS ON FILE COULD CAUSE YOU TO LOSE THE ABILITY TO REQUEST CREDIT REPORTS.
LLC will provide the applicant with a free copy of their file within 30 days of their receipt of the declination letter upon their written request. LLC will then handle any disputes the applicant has regarding their file.