What is the normal procedure to fill a property?
When we receive a thirty-day notice, the Team assigned to it sends an email to the Owner. The email contains the suggested rent amount and lease terms with a request for their approval.
The Property Manager performs a walkthrough of the home and schedules any needed repairs and/or cleaning. Once it is show ready, the Property Manager takes pictures of the home and writes a listing. The home is then listed on our own website and auto-populates to over a dozen other site. Empire receives all inquiries. This includes phone calls, emails, and walk-ins. For those that are interested in the home, we schedule a viewing for them with the Property Manager.
The applications are processed by our Leasing Agents. They screen the applicant for a criminal background, credit, and rental history. They also complete a social media check. Empire also requires 3 months income verification. If the applicant is self-employed, Empire requires additional documentation. Once the information needed to judge the application is complete, the Leasing Agent and Property Manager go over it together.
If the applicant is approved by the Property Manager, they are contacted to set up a time to sign the rental agreement. The signing is normally done at the home with the Property Manager. If they are denied, the Leasing Agent sends a denial letter stating the reason.
To this day, Empire has never evicted a tenant that we put into the home. We would consider it a fundamental failure on our part if circumstances ever force us to perform an eviction on a tenant we moved in. And as time passes, we only grow more careful. After over ten years in the field, we still have a perfect record. We want to keep it that way.
Where do you advertise your properties?
Homes for rent through Empire Property Management are listed in several locations across the web. This includes Zillow, Hotpads, Trulia, our own website, and roughly ten other sites.
How do Applicants apply?
Applicants have the option of applying online at our website or coming to our office to fill out a paper application.
Do you have an application fee? How much?
Empire charges an application fee of $40.00 per applicant. Everyone eighteen and above is required to apply.
Does Empire perform a criminal background, credit, and rental history check?
Yes, Empire does perform a criminal background, credit, and rental history check, as well as a social media check.
What criteria does Empire use to screen prospective tenants?
The criteria used by Empire consist of:
Rental history of at least 3 years.
It must be verifiable from an unbiased source (i.e. no employees/ employers/ relatives). Lack of previous rental references could result in application denial.
Applicant must have either Social Security Number or Tax ID Number.
Applicant must provide contact information for the previous landlord.
Net household income must be 3 times the rent, excluding utilities.
Income must be verifiable through pay stubs, employer, current tax records, and/or bank statement.
Negative criminal/credit/public records report may result in denial of the application.
Credit scores below 650 may result in denial of the application.
Any source of income deemed illegal by either State or Federal governments will be ineligible for tenancy.
Any individual who is a current substance abuser has been convicted of illegal manufacture or distribution of a controlled substance or convicted of a felony, may be denied tenancy.
Does the Property Manager accompany prospective tenants to view the property?
Empire Property Management does not do self-shows. Prospective tenants will only view the home with the Property Manager. This allows us to evaluate them on a one-on-one basis.
Can the agreement include Owner-requested addendums?
We judge that on a case-by-case basis. Speak with your Property Manager.
Can we get a copy of the standard rental agreement?
Absolutely! Contact your Property Manager and request it.
What is the standard deposit?
Empire’s standard deposit is $25-200 above the rent amount.
What is the standard deposit for pets?
Empire charges a $300.00 additional deposit per pet. The tenants will also pay $20 per pet in pet rent monthly.
What are pet restrictions?
We do not allow dogs of any dangerous breed as pets. This includes Chows, Pit Bulls, Presa Canarios, Rottweilers, Akitas, Doberman Pinschers, wolf-hybrids, any mix of dangerous breeds, and/or any dog restricted by associated insurance companies.
Empire has a company-wide 2-pet limit. For more information, please see our Pet Policy.
Is there a preference for leases or month-to-month contract?
It varies by home. Ask your Property Manager.
What is the standard rent/income ratio for prospective tenants?
Empire requires that they make 3-times the rent amount.
Do you accept co-signers?
We judge it on a by-case basis.
Do you make exceptions to rental criteria? For what reasons? Do you charge an increased deposit?
We very rarely make an exception. Empire views a tenancy as a three-legged table. These legs are credit, rental history, and income. Sometimes one or more can be weak. If two are weak, there is no fix. If one is weak, sometimes we can boost it up with an increased deposit, but only for those with sterling rental history.
If the leg that is weak is that way because of bad rental history, then no amount of extra deposit can fill the gap.
The renter is Section 8. Does the Owner need to perform any additional actions?
No. The Property Manager takes care of it.