Ok.. first, Do not ever get to the lease until after you have done all of the following (and in the order).
1) pre-screen a potential tenant. Ask about their income (must be 3X rent), how long worked at same place, how long lived at current place, number of people total, pets, ..etc (see prescreening card here).
only if the answers to all those questions is ok. then,
2) arrange a time to meet and show the unit. If they don't want to see the unit ...red flag. You must meet them in person
3) they want the place? rental application. Must be filled out in full and signed..must pay $45 cash to run the background/credit/criminal checks. MUST. check their ID..drivers lic.
4) RUN the background/credit/criminal checks. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP.
if all is well...
5) collect a non-refundable reservation fee equal to one month rent.
6) if they want a copy (unsigned) of the lease to show lawyer... ok...BUT, YOU ARE NOT CHANGING ANYTHING IN THE LEASE. NOT
7) 2 weeks before move in.. make sure the utilities are put in their name effective the move in date. If not..remind them they will not be allowed to move in unless this is done.
8) day of move in. Get rent money (first and last) in full in cash. FIRST. CASH.
9) do a complete walk thru..document the entire place and get tenant to sign all of it.
10) sign lease and addendums
11) give them keys
12) make copies and send copies of all signed docs.
If you follow this procedure you will likely have little or no trouble in the future.