Rentals in Naperville>Question Details

nkeyb2b, Renter in Naperville, IL

Anyone know why someone would request a photo ID on a rental application? Racial profiling? Cant figure out why else you would need one.

Asked by nkeyb2b, Naperville, IL Sun Jun 16, 2013

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To verify your identity, there is no way to verify a person without identification.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sun Jul 7, 2013
Photo ID's are used to establish identity. It's up to the agent and is a part of due diligence to confirm the identity of the person of whom they are working with especially for a rental. If Credit and background are being pulled and an application is submitted to the owner it's a must.

Pamela Peterson
RE/MAX Action
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Nov 11, 2013
Photo ID is for identification purposes only. Landords also accept passport as identifications. There is also a required criminal background check and to do so the applicant must prove who they are for verification. Because some people have asked others to apply for them providing photo identification minimizes the risk of the a person covering for another.

All these procedures is for the renters safety also as this is standard procedure. It is against the law to profile because of race at anytime. This is never allowed.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 20, 2013
I don't understand the question. So - why would you have an objection to showing a photo ID to prove you are you?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 10, 2013
I require a photo ID just to simply verify that the person who is applying for the lease is in fact the same person. Unfortunately there are far to many scams being played. Last year I had a person who applied to rent a home from me who was actually the father of the applicant. Same name, they simply left off the middle initial. The son was a bad risk and the father wanted him out of his house.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jul 6, 2013
I agree with Suzanne, it is becoming more prominent out there that a landlord will request a valid ID. There seem to be a lot more rental scams out there and landlords are typically looking to protect their properties.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 26, 2013
Once again, to clarify. The landlords are asked for Photo ID before even running the background check. Not at the time of lease signing which I would totally understand.

I look forward to any reason they would need it before I sat down to sign any document giving me the property for rent.

I agree with all that there is probably no sinister motive here but it really does not make much sense.

Thanks again for all the feed back
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
First of all, not all landlords ask for this, but it is getting more prominent.

As said below, they want to ensure you are who you say you are. You would not believe the false information rental applicants provide. I have even had people fake pretty good payroll statements.

Also, along those lines, they are checking out your story. Your application, credit report, payroll info all have addresses. They want to see that it matches or not. If not, it is a question. That also backs up landlord information and if you are giving the correct landlord. Unfortunately, the scammers make it difficult for everyone.

I understand what you are saying though and this may be possible with some landlords. I hope not, because that is a huge violation of fair housing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
It is to show you are who you say you are. If you are buying a house you also have to show your photo ID (driver's license, etc.). Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
To prove that you are who you say you are. There are a lot of crazies out there who try and get away with a lot of shady things. If you are potentially entering into a legal contract with someone then you should expect to need to provide this sort of documentation
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
Fyi, racial profiling is much less identifiable, less in-your-face, less visible, more insidious. Most of the time, you would not even know you're being profiled, unless you're dealing with experts. Much less overt.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
Why would asking for a photo ID be racial profiling? The landlord asks for your social security number, but you have a problem with them asking for your driver's license to verify that you are who you say you are?

If you have nothing to hide on your rental application, then there would be no problem telling the landlord who you are, or even meeting him. After all, you ARE going to be living in their property, & they are the person taking on the risk of their investment.

As long as the landlord asks every single tenant the same questions, & qualifies them on the same criteria (As long as that criteria does not discriminate based on any protected classes), they have done nothing wrong.

I hope this is helpful. Good luck in your rental search!

Kevin Hudoba
Real Estate Agent
Exit Realty Redefined
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
I have no problem providing my Photo ID when signing the lease. I see no reason they need to have it before this since I was using a realtor and had no direct contact with the lessor. Even with the answers to this question above and below i see no reason for them to need a PHOTO id before the signing of the lease. Also this opens up this type of question by doing it. They can't just say at this point they turned you down because of bad credit, income insufficient, past rental issues, etc without Photo ID also coming into question. Just seems irrelevant before the signing of the lease since they have all of your other information, ie social security, signed release for background check, references from form landlords etc.
Flag Mon Jun 17, 2013
For the same reason you have to provide a photo ID when writing a check, it confirms your identity.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
Quite often the handwritten application lacks good penmanship. Imagine that.
Having the ID helps when filling out the credit report co forms and to assure that the adults are all who they say they are.
Paycheck stubs and bank statements showing some money can also help a landlord make a decision.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
The reason this is asked is to make sure that the person applying for the rental is the actual person living in the rental. At a home closing, the buyer must provide a picture ID...a rental is really no different.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
My concern is the fact the photo ID is required to turn in an application, prior to the landlord accepting the offer and signing the lease. To rule out the possibility of discrimination, it seems as though photo ID should be required, once the other documentation has been reviewed and approved.
Flag Mon Jun 17, 2013

I've seen this practice all over Florida, too. I don' think it has anything whatsoever to do with racial profiling or any kind of profiling. It's just making sure that you are the person you say you are, plain and simple.

Scott Miller
Boca Raton-Miami Beach
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
I am not sure either. I suppose to guard against identity theft. There are an awful lot of scammers posing as tenants these days. They get you to take them on as a tenant and then make your life a nightmare until you evict them. I suppose that, if they say "I didn't sign that lease" it would contribute to the difficulty in having them removed. I also know that Photo ID is needed to get a mortgage so I would imagine it's the same theory, making absolutely sure the person signing the lease is who they say they are. I honestly don't know any landlords who engage in racial profiling. I do a lot of rentals and all the landlords I work with just want to know you can and will pay the rent on time, in full, each month and will take good care of their property, the rental unit. Other than that they couldn't care less what color, race, creed or religion the tenants are.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 17, 2013
Hello there! Honestly, I am not really sure. I never thought it was racial profiling, but again, not really sure about that either...
I look forward to reading other answers!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 16, 2013
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