Prepare a printable, free Michigan rental application form to verify potential tenants. Tailor your application to Michigan’s statutes now with all the critical details required by law.
Last Update August 22nd, 2021
What Is a Michigan Residential Rental Application
A Michigan rental application is a legal document used by landlords and property managers to assess and choose an appropriate tenant for a rental property. They are sometimes known by other common names such as:
Rental lease applications
Application for a rental property
Having a rental application can prove highly important to make sure you get the right tenant into your property. The process of screening prospective residents in this way allows you to discover any issues such as their inability to pay rent or the likelihood to cause a nuisance before signing a contract.
Michigan Rental Applications by Type
There are two main types of rental applications in Michigan. You must select the most relevant one depending on the type of property being rented, local laws, and the type of leasing agreement that will be used.
Standard/General Michigan Rental Application
The most common type of vetting document used by MI landlords is the Michigan Standard Rental Application. This form can be customized according to the specific necessities of the property owner or manager.
Department of Housing And Urban Development (HUD) Rental Application
Landlords of low-income tenants or those offering Section 8 Housing should use a HUD rental application. It is specifically designed to only include information that is allowed under subsidized housing rules.
What to Include in a Michigan Rental Application Form
When you fill in a simple rental application form for Michigan you’ll need to ask for some crucial data from the tenant to make the vetting process as effective as possible.
When you create your own application for a rental property you should request the following information:
Permission for background checks
Furthermore, landlords must make a number of important disclosures on a standard rental application form. This information might include:
The property’s condition
Potential hazards to the tenant
Shared utility arrangements
Rent control rules
The security deposit
Michigan Rental Application Laws
Michigan state has various laws regarding the use of rental applications. If your document is not compliant with MI law, you may get sued by the applicant and face legal consequences.
There is no limit in terms of what application fee can be charged by Michigan landlords. Furthermore, the application fee is non-refundable regardless of its amount.
Landlords cannot charge more than one and a half months’ rent if they are leasing an unfurnished apartment under Michigan law (Michigan Compiled Laws, Chapter 554, Section 554.602). However, landlords with furnished properties can charge up to 3 months’ rent.
Housing Discrimination Law
In Michigan, there is no specific state law relating to housing discrimination. However, the Fair Housing Act (FHA) is in place. The FHA states that it is illegal to discriminate based on the following characteristics:
As a consequence, you are not allowed to ask for any of these details on a MI Rental Application form nor to include them in the decision-making process.
Notice of Eligibility
Potential tenants must be informed about the screening criteria and reasons for denial or approval. To prove that these facts were shared, a signature of acknowledgment must be provided within the application or alongside it.
Consent Credit Check
Within Michigan, federal law is in effect that requires potential renters to provide written consent for a credit history check during the application process. This is known as the Federal Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).
FAQs About Michigan Rental Application Form
Having a good idea of what you can and cannot use a Michigan rental application for is important. In our FAQs below, we explain what is and isn’t allowed when you create your own form.
What Are Credit References on a Michigan Rental Application?
A credit reference is a document that provides information on the credit history of an applicant for a rental property. This may be requested on MI rental applications so that landlords can properly assess whether a potential tenant will be able to meet the rental payment schedule.
What Cannot Be Asked on Rental Applications in Michigan?
You cannot ask tenants a number of questions when you are vetting them with a Michigan rental application document. You must not request any of the following information from the applicant during this process:
Race or ethnicity
Immigration or citizenship status
Marital or familial status
Whether they have children or not
Do I Need to Ask for a Social Security Number in a Michigan Rental Application?
It is not usually necessary to request a Social Security number (SSN) on an MI rental application. However, you may consider requesting this data from an applicant if you want to run certain background checks on them.
Additionally, you must always get written permission from the tenant on the application form if you want to use their SSN. When you handle someone else’s Social Security information you always need consent first and must disclose that you will properly handle this data.
These days, most screening companies can obtain the applicant’s SSN directly by requesting it securely from the applicant via email. Remember, however, that you must always inform the potential tenant and have their permission before you run any background checks.