You can learn a lot with a Google search these days, but there are still a few questions a search engine can’t answer. If you need specific information about an individual (whether it is a potential roommate or potential date), you might get further with a background check.
BeenVerified scours public records to collect information so you can access it in one convenient report. If you need more information than a search engine can provide, you might want to try this service. Keep reading to learn more about what BeenVerified can—and cannot—offer.
- Mobile apps (including an app for Apple Watch)
- Website with answers to lots of customer questions
- Access to lots of information in one place
- Multiple payment options
- Court runner service for offline information
- Restrictions on how information can be used
- Information you pay for that can be found elsewhere for free
- Occasional unavailable or inaccurate information
What we like about BeenVerified
Like other background check companies, BeenVerified collects data from public records to create background reports. Since background check companies have no influence over what is available in public records, they all offer about the same thing.
However, BeenVerified does a few things that stand out:
- It offers a mobile app for iOS and Android. You can even use it on Apple Watch. This makes it easy to quickly look up information on the fly, whenever curiosity strikes.
- The company website includes lots of detailed, easy-to-understand information to answer customer questions.
- The company is transparent about what information is available and how it can be used.
- You can use PayPal if you don’t want to pay with a credit card.
- BeenVerified provides court runner service, which means that it will send someone to the local courthouse to retrieve documents you can’t access online.
What are the downsides of choosing BeenVerified?
BeenVerified comes with the same limitations you’d run into with any other background check company.
- Reports depend on public records, which means some information may be inaccurate, outdated, or unavailable.
- BeenVerified is not a consumer reporting agency, so you cannot use the information you find for certain purposes. For example, you can’t legally use information from BeenVerified to screen potential employees or tenants.
- Some of the information that BeenVerified gives you is available for free in other places. For example, you can scour social media or request court documents by yourself. You’re really paying BeenVerified for the time-saving convenience, but you can save money if you spend some time and extra effort to track all that information down on your own.
How much do memberships cost, and what do they include?
BeenVerified lets users purchase individual reports or pay for memberships that come with unlimited reports.
A one-month membership costs $26.89.
If you plan on using the service for more than a month, you can save money with a three-month membership. It costs $52.45, which comes out to $17.48 per month.
Memberships include unlimited access to many services:
- Background reports
- Phone and email lookups
- Criminal record and sex offender lookups
- Address lookups
- Contact information
What kind of information is included in a background check?
Background checks include only information that is available in public records. BeenVerified gathers information from court records, mortgage deeds, utility bills, magazines, and other public documents to compile your reports.
The results of your search will depend on what information is publicly available. If you run a people search, you may find someone’s age, address, phone number, criminal records, and email address. The report could also include photos, social media profiles, court records, criminal records, and names of their family members.
When can you use BeenVerified?
BeenVerified is a good option if you want to quickly look up basic information about another person you don’t know. It’s geared toward more casual use than intense investigation.
- Find out what a background check reveals about yourself
- Look up an address to send out holiday cards or important announcements
- Check out a potential date to make sure they’ve been honest with you before you meet in person
- Learn more about potential roommates before you move in with them
- Check out someone who is selling something online
- Check out someone who is buying something from you online
When do you have to use a consumer reporting agency instead of BeenVerified?
Many situations require you to use a consumer reporting agency instead of a background check company. Here are a few of the things you can’t use BeenVerified for.
- Screening someone for employment or a promotion
- Hiring household workers like nannies or landscapers
- Screening tenants
- Evaluating someone’s eligibility for an educational program or scholarship
- Determining someone’s eligibility for insurance or credit
Customer reviews—the good and the bad
Positive reviews of BeenVerified focus on how easy it is to process all the information.
We also found quite a few negative reviews, but we should note that almost all of these negative reviews complain about receiving inaccurate, incomplete, or out-of-date reports. While these are valid frustrations, they are not necessarily representations of something the company has done wrong. You’d run into the same issues with any other company in the industry because they’re all dealing with the same set of restrictions.
BeenVerified is quite transparent about the fact that reports are based public records and that this information may not be correct.
I loved the service and was pleasantly surprised at how simple it was to navigate thru the information. I definitely will be using this service in the future. Customer service was excellent as well. No hassles and very courteous. Thank you guys. — Eva, September 5, 2017, Consumer Affairs
I recently suffered damage to my house by a driver, but they didn’t have any insurance information. All I had was the registered owner of the vehicle, who was not driving it at the time. I used your service to locate the owner in Maine (I live in Georgia) and get some important information on him. Turns out he is on probation for spousal abuse. Your service was very easy to use, fairly quick, and I was amazed how much info you had on him. — Richard, August 31, 2017, Consumer Affairs
I ran multiple reports including my own, and was surprised to see the lack of pertinent and inaccurate information posted in nearly all cases. The information provided was readily available for free on the internet. It was a waste of money. I have had much better service using other companies. I suggest you do the same. — Barbara, September 2, 2017, Consumer Affairs
If you want to satisfy your curiosity, check out your future roommates, investigate that guy your friend is trying to set you up with, or find out whether your neighbors have criminal records, BeenVerified could be a useful service.
Background checks have limitations, but if you want to learn more about people in your life and protect yourself from the unknown, this service makes it easy to check out all the publicly available information in one convenient report. We especially appreciate that BeenVerified makes it extra easy to access this information on your phone with a mobile app.
We wouldn’t recommend signing up for a subscription unless you’re planning on running multiple background checks on a regular basis. However, if you’re trying out online dating, selling things online often, or looking up contact information for a large group, the subscription could be a great deal.
Otherwise, you’re probably better off paying for individual reports when you look up your own information, check out new roommates, or make a one-time purchase from a stranger online.
Have you used a background checking service in the past? Did you find it helpful? Share your experiences in the comment section below.