Prospective Tenant...Application Process...How To Deny...Thanks!


  • “What verbiage do you use to Deny a Prospective Tenant who has gone through your Application Process?”
  • “By what means do you deliver this Denial (Certified Mail /or/ Email /or/ Another Method)?”
  • “Do you provide a reason for Denial?”

We only allow one Prospective Applicant at a time.

Thus, we rarely Deny anyone who has gone through the Application process.

I am aware that you CANNOT discriminate based on:

  • “…race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status (including children under the age of 18 living with parents or legal custodians, pregnant women, and people securing custody of children under the age of 18), and disability.”

We are NOT denying based on any of the above.

I just came across several articles on the internet that state that you must give the Prospective Tenant a reason for denying them.

Is this correct?

Now we evict with no reasons listed.

Can we deny with no reasons listed?

Thanks in advance!


I just found this same thread from 2014 with answers from:

As Per @frankrolfe Dec '14:
You are not required to give an explanation, but if it makes you feel uncomfortable, you can give them their money back. I assume you charge $20 and, if you value your time, that’s not worth a minute of worry over, as you will probably spend that much on dinner tonight. That happens only occasionally, and it must be your lucky turn.

As Per @Greg Dec '14:
Applicants do not deserve any explanation as to why they are undesirable.We simply state that we do not consider it appropriate to provide reasons and do not wish to give explanations. If they push the matter we may say they did not meet our screen requirement and that our requirements are our private business.Best is to simply say no and hang up.

We have, and all landlords I know, a policy to never provide a reason for rejection. The only exception would be if your state landlord tenant regulations require that you provide a reason which is highly unlikely.
Our rejections are verbal. If a written rejection is required we would simply state " We regret to inform you that your application for tenancy at … has been denied."

The problem is that once you provide a reason for the rejection, you are locked into that and you give the prospect a target to refute. Certainly with employment, the best reason to terminate or not hire is for “no reason.” So, absent a specific statute that says you have to give a reason (there may be a city or state that requires that), I think it’s a bad idea to do so. It just opens you open a bit more as a target.

Greg, thank you for your comment! - @Greg

Kurt, thank you for your comment! - @KurtKelley

We greatly appreciate it!

In my case I have my manager just blame me. She just tells them that the owner declined and he didn’t tell me why. That way she’s not the bad guy, I am. But we do not provide a reason no matter what. Maybe you could blame your husband???

1 Like