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HELP ASAP! Selecting a tenant!

Hi I live in Utah and we are just entering into the landlord process on our previous home. We put a sign in the yard and had a lot of interest before we had a qualification checklist or application to rent ready. We have a list of people wanting to apply & have given us their info to send them the checklist & application. Many said they love the home and want it. But someone just came through and is the first person to mention giving us a deposit right now. We do think this person seems like a great fit too, so that makes it hard.  Can we give this person an application and try to get a lease signed now, OR do we have to go back to all the people who expressed interest first? They have all been waiting on us to get out info to them, but none tried to put down a deposit and we didn't ask about it either.

In this case there are no obligations on your end, the fact that they have a deposit ready so that you can run a background check on them does put them ahead of the crowd. The only thing to be sure of is to not discriminate when choosing your tenant. Choosing the money and seriously interested party is not discrimination, this is a business and the goal is to get the property occupied as soon as possible. it sounds to me as if you have been fair so far. Good Luck and do run a background check on everybody.
Most people who have two great tenants available and can't choose go on a first come first serve basis. This way it is fair to you and the tenants involved and easily understandable without the tenant taking something personal.
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