Can Landlords Achieve Rent Security in the Age of COVID-19?

Landlords relying on instant access to applicant income can better defend their approve/deny decisions, and lay the groundwork for successful, long-term tenancy.

Strategic landlords are seeking the best information they can get their hands on these days, especially when it comes to income. It’s no wonder. When uncertainty increases, we all reach for concrete answers. And even under normal circumstances, it can be a challenge for landlords to work with tenants who are on shaky financial ground. While the historic method of collecting pay stubs and bank statements is the go-to practice, landlords will benefit greatly by moving into the future with automatically and independently verified income.

Where do landlords get automatically and independently verified income data? Commercial services which aggregate actual data from the bank account of your applicant or existing tenant are available. One such service ( reveals up-to-the-minute income. Significantly, there is no opportunity for applicants to manipulate the data shown in the income verification report.

  • What’s the result? Pay stub fraud is a thing of the past.

And with the prevalence of fake pay stubs and bank statements generated online these days (on average, it takes ~4 minutes), landlords just can’t be sure what they receive is useful or valid info. Even before the virus took hold, one in five applications included stated income that has been inflated and one in 12 applications included false income information.

OK, pay stub fraud eliminated. Check. What about the time it takes to collect income info from candidate renters? This part of the screening exercise can drag on for days, maybe even a week. Instead, invite an applicant or potentially renewing tenant to reply to an automated income verification request from The Closing Docs, and the landlord will have the truth about candidate income in minutes. Not days.

  • What’s the result? Instant access to income information expedites screening significantly enough to reduce vacancy periods. That’s real money.

OK, shorter vacancy periods. Check. What about earners whose income is sporadic, like commissions-based or tips-based employees, how do landlords learn their capacity to pay rent going forward? It’s easy with The Closing Docs. The company aggregates and categorizes deposits, both on a routine cadence, and those deposits made infrequently.

  • What’s the result? No more guesswork regarding whether someone has the capacity to pay rent in the future.

OK, visibility into fluctuating incomes. Check. What about roommate scenarios, is there an easy way to spend less time deciphering whether a group application meets the income threshold? Yes. The Closing Docs instantly collects the data from each individual and combines the info into a normalized report.

  • What’s the result? Landlords get a clear picture instantaneously whether a household has the income to qualify.

Now that we know why to use The Closing Docs (no more pay stub fraud, instant access to current income data, expedited screening to shorten vacancy periods, aggregation of income info across households), when is the right time to use The Closing Docs? To expedite workflow and validate income data, originate requests for automated income verification at these times:

New applicants

In the case of new applicants, landlords want to determine whether they can meet the monthly rent obligation.

Prior to renewing existing tenants

Same goes for existing tenants. Before signing them up for another 12-month term, it’s wise to verify existing tenants are currently receiving income deposits.

When existing tenants come to you for rent relief

When tenants ask for rent relief due to changes in employment status, there is no better way to determine the extent of their hardship than reviewing up-to-the-minute deposit history. That info will support discussing potential terms with owners, providing current data to defend any position.

Now more than ever, automated income verification is the best approach to gain confidence, increase accuracy and expedite approval. Learn more at