A rental application form plays an essential role in the tenant screening process. It allows you to obtain written consent from a prospective tenant to do a background check before allowing them to lease a residential space.
While these documents are relatively easy to create, you must adhere to certain laws that govern what you may and may not include in your Oklahoma rental application. In this article, we will discuss what you need to know about creating your own application form when leasing a rental property.
What Is a Rental Application?
An Oklahoma rental application form is a legal document used to obtain certain information about applicants and to get written consent to run a background check. It is also used to provide disclosures to the candidate, so they know about the condition of the rental property and the presence of any potential hazards.
What to Include
In the sections below, we'll take a look at the information you must request from potential renters and the disclosures you will need to make.
Request for Information
You will need to include space for the candidate to enter the following details:
- Personal details
- Rental history
- Information about their employment
- Employment details
- Credit history
- A section for the applicant to provide explicit consent for a credit check
In addition to a request for information, you will also need to disclose the following information:
- Potential hazards (such as lead-based paint)
- The condition of the rental property
- Rental control rules
- Details about the rental amount and the security deposit
- Pet and smoking rules
- Associated fees
What Not to Include
According to Fair Housing laws, there are certain things that landlords may not discriminate against. This includes:
- Familial status
Regarding rental application fees, it is essential to look at what the law has to say. This fee generally covers the costs associated with the background check. Fortunately, there is no maximum rental application fee that a landlord in Oklahoma may charge potential tenants.
Moreover, a security deposit may be required if the landlord accepts a potential tenant's application. The amount demanded for a security deposit that landlords can demand is unrestricted by Oklahoma state law.
Oklahoma landlords are not required to give tenants a receipt after receiving a security deposit. These security deposits must always be kept in an escrow account at a commercial bank that is federally insured.
The Federal Credit Reporting Act
According to the Federal Credit Reporting Act, candidates must grant written approval before landlords can perform a credit analysis using the completed rental application data pertaining to the potential tenant.
The Oklahoma rental application form itself may contain a declaration and space for a signature, or a supplementary legal document may be used to provide this written consent.
As part of the tenant screening process, you will need to run the following checks:
- Criminal history check. To learn more about an applicant's criminal history, you can go to the Oklahoma government website and conduct a search using the potential tenant's details.
- Credit check. There are several ways to obtain a credit report in Oklahoma. You can use one of several online resources to get information about a candidate's financial standing. Some reports provide a simple pass or fail result, while others offer a more comprehensive report.
- Eviction history check. Landlords and agencies can search the Oklahoma State Court records, where eviction records are made public, and conduct a search using the name of a prospective applicant. Simply go to the Oklahoma State Courts Network Docket Search and follow the prompts to obtain information about the applicant from the past seven years.
Adverse Action Notices
If you intend to reject the candidate, request a co-signer, or increase the rental or deposit amount, you will need to issue a document referred to as an adverse action notice.
Even if the data from the consumer report wasn't the main reason for the notice, it is still necessary to provide an adverse action notice.
The statement must include information about the credit reporting agency, a declaration that the candidate has the right to receive a copy of the report, and contest its accuracy within 60 days.
Build Your Own
If you are a landlord or property manager in Oklahoma, it helps to know how to create your own application form. Suppose you own several rental properties. In that case, using property management software to generate custom rental documents in just a few minutes is particularly helpful.
DoorLoop has an intuitive software application that you can use to:
- Run background checks
- Learn more about a tenant's rental history
- Receive and keep track of payments
- List properties for rent
However, if you're not ready to invest in software just yet, you can use our free form to create your next rental application. You can find it here:
Creating a rental application is not as difficult as you might think, but you must follow certain laws and regulations. If you need help generating application forms quickly and easily, contact us today to book a free demo to try DoorLoop out for yourself!
Where can I find the best tenant screening software?
Right here, of course! DoorLoop offers a host of features to help you run your rental business.
What should I look for when screening an applicant?
Here are some of the important details to take note of when screening a candidate:
- Their employment details
- How much they earn (to determine whether they can afford the rent)
- Their criminal and eviction history
Is Oklahoma a landlord-friendly state?
Yes! The state doesn't impose restrictions on security deposits, and rental application fees like other states do, making it a great place to be a landlord.