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Tristan’s Landlord-Tenant Law Blog

Archive of: Screening Tenants

HUD Issues New Guidelines On The Use of Criminal Records In The Rental Screening Process

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Fair Housing / Discrimination, Screening Tenants / Comments

On April 4, 2016 the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) dropped a bombshell on owners and managers of residential rental properties in the U.S.HUD's Office of General Counsel published a 10 page guide entitled "Guidance on Application of Fair Housing Act Standards to the Use of Criminal Records by Providers of Housing and Real-Estate Related Transactions." This guide essentially changes the rules as we ...

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GUEST POST: The Benefits of Tenant Screening

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Credit Checks, Screening Tenants / Comments

This is a blog post drafted by the American Apartment Owners AssociationAlthough taking time to screen rental applicants thoroughly may not seem necessary, failing to do so may cost you considerable time and money later. If you just accept money from an applicant ready to put down the deposit today, it could backfire on you. If you simply approve a tenant after verifying his or her employment because you are ...

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Screening Prospective Tenants Is a Must --- That Includes Commercial Tenants

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Screening Tenants, Bankruptcy, Rejecting Rental Applicants, Commercial L-T Law / Comments

Those of you that have attended my seminars or read prior blog posts of mine are well aware that in my opinion screening prospective tenants is the single most important part of landlording.These sentiments apply to commercial tenants as well as residential tenants. Just because your tenant is a corporation, LLC or some other business entity does not make make them legitimate.A corporate tenant can also fail to pay ...

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New CCAP Bill Introduced

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Legislation, Screening Tenants, CCAP / Comments

A new CCAP bill (Senate Bill 526) was introduced on January 30, 2014 by Senators Grothman, Taylor, Schultz, Harris, and Risser. A public hearing has already been held.Current law allows for any criminal charge to remain on CCAP even if the charge was dismissed.This new bill, if passed, would require the Director of CCAP to remove a case involving a misdemeanor or felony from CCAP within 120 days ...

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CCAP Is Under Attack Again

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Legislation, Evictions, Screening Tenants, CCAP / Comments

When Senator Marlin Schneider lost re-election a few years ago, I thought that the attacks against Wisconsin's Consolidated Court Automation Programs (CCAP) would disappear.  Well they did -- for a while.  But Senator Lena Taylor along with Representatives Goyke, Sargent, Kessler, Hebl and Pope haven taken up the torch and are trying to prevent the public from accessing CCAP once again via Senate Bill 234/Assembly Bill 253.These two bills were ...

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Top 10 Pitfalls That Landlords Should Avoid

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in AASEW, Notices, Screening Tenants, Rental Agreements, Rental Documents, CCAP, Seminars, Property Management, Rejecting Rental Applicants / Comments

Those of you that missed the last AASEW membership meeting on Monday, April 15, 2013, missed a great meeting and a great presentation.  The featured presenter was John "Dr. Rent" Fischer, a Wausau-area landlord and rental property manager, who spoke to a packed house that Monday.  John's presentation was dynamic, educational and at times pretty darn funny.With John's permission, I am providing you with a link to ...

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East Side Landlord "Think Small" Seminar Event on March 13th

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Screening Tenants, Seminars, Act 143 (Landlord's Omnibus Law) / Comments

Make plans to attend the fourth East Side Landlord Think Small event hosted by UWM! This event is free and open to all interested landlords, with a special focus on Milwaukee's East Side.This spring's event promises to be very engaging with featured presenter Attorney Tristan Pettit, who focuses his practice on representing landlords and management companies in landlord-tenant law matters.Topics will include screening potential tenants and recent updates to landlord-tenant laws ...

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HUD Issues New Rule On "Discriminatory Effect" a.k.a Disparate Impact

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in AASEW, Fair Housing / Discrimination, Legislation, Protected Classes, Screening Tenants / Comments

HUD has issued a new Fair Housing “disparate impact” rule that may cause problems for landlords during the screening process.  The new rule creates a new provision entitled “Prohibiting Discriminatory Effects” which defines “discriminatory effect” as situations in which a facially neutral (i.e. not discriminatory) housing practice can become discriminatory if it actually or predictably has an effect on a group of persons that are members of a protected ...

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CCAP Committee's Recommendation To Change Wisconsin's Expungment Laws Shot Down

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Legislation, Screening Tenants, CCAP / Comments

Last year Wisconsin's Joint Legislative Council created a Special Committee On The Review of Records Access of Circuit Court Documents – what I affectionately referredto as the CCAP Committee. Landlords were very fortunate that in the end the committee made no recommendations to change or alter information on CCAP or limit its access by landlords or any other group. The committee's sole recommendation was to call for the ...

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You Will Not Want To Miss AASEW's Fourth Annual Landlord Boot Camp on Saturday Feb. 25th

Posted by Tristan R. Pettit, Esq. in Tenant Damage, Credit Checks, AASEW, Lead-Based Paint, Fair Housing / Discrimination, Protected Classes, Evictions, Late Fees, Notices, Collections, Emergency Assistance, City of Milwaukee, Screening Tenants, Rental Agreements, Rental Documents, Seminars, Pets, Security Deposit, Milwaukee County, Property Management, Mitigation of Damages / Re-Renting, Untenantability, Execution of Writ, State of Wisconsin, Self-Help Evictions, Right of Entry, Reasonable Modifications, Reasonable Accommodations, Rejecting Rental Applicants, Walkthroughs, De Novo Hearings, Earnest Money, Landlord Liability, Small Claims Court, Holdover Damages, Roommates, Smoke Detectors / Comments

Landlording can be pretty complex, with a seemingly never ending myriad of paperwork, rules, landlord-tenant laws and simple mistakes that can cost you thousands of dollars.The Apartment Association of Southeastern Wisconsin's Fourth Annual “Landlord Boot Camp” can help you navigate these treacherous waters and teach you how to run your properties with greater profit and less hassles.I have given similar landlord-tenant law seminars to fellow attorneys, landlords, and property manager ...

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