It is always tempting to assume that your tenants will take good care of your property. However, not all tenants know how to maintain a property, and you may be putting your investment at risk.
Therefore, you must have your rental property inspected regularly. A property inspection can help you avert numerous problems. While at the same time ensuring that your property is always in good shape.
This post highlights a few of the biggest benefits you will enjoy from periodic inspections.
Why do you need to do regular property inspections on your rental property?
- Inspections will alert you of any lease violations.
Firstly, include in the contract the agreed upon expectation on conduct and care of your property. Not all tenants are alike, so make sure to have a set of agreed-upon rules or set of expectations. If this is a family neighbourhood, you can put in the agreement that the tenants are expected to keep noise to a minimum, especially after a set time (like 9pm) to avoid inconveniencing the other neighbours. You can also stipulate that the care of rental unit lawns or front and/or backyard should be up to the tenants. While it is expected that the tenants go through careful screening by the landlords, even the best tenants may suddenly have challenges, become busy, or careless. To give the tenants incentive to keep the rental property in tip-top shape, you should let them know that there will be regular property inspections.
- Inspections allow you to see if you are meeting your tenants’ needs.
The landlord-tenant agreement is a two-way agreement. You also need to make sure that you are keeping up your end of the bargain by ensuring that the property you are renting out is clean, safe and a conducive place to live in. Regular property inspections can help you find issues that may cause problems later if left unaddressed.
- Inspections help you to avoid severe cumulative problems.
Rental property problems emerge with just the normal wear and tear of everyday life. By doing a regular rental property inspection, you can catch these problems before they become serious money draining ones. The weather can cause minor damages to your rental property that can turn into bigger issues. A small leak in the rainy season can grow to be a huge problem that results in failing pipes, water damage, property flooding, or growth of moulds if left unaddressed. Try to look for damage that is to be repaired by tenants (unhinged doors, broken windows, torn baseboards, etc.) and damage/issues that you are responsible for fixing (leaking roof, clogged outside drains, irregular garbage collection, etc.).
- Inspections can help you to learn more about a tenant’s behaviour and lifestyle.
A property inspection can give you clues about how each tenant uses your rental property. God forbid, they are using it for illegal activity. You can discover if your tenants are involved in criminal activity or drug use from the clues you find during your property inspection. Tenants who have problems with hoarding will eventually be obvious over time, their stuff might spill over to common areas which can be a great inconvenience to other neighbours. You can catch these early on with routine inspections.
- Inspections improve owner-tenant communication.
You may be a landlord who lives in or close to your rental property, or you may be a landlord who lives further away and thus, rely on property management company to coordinate your regular rental property inspections. Whatever the case may be, regular rental property inspections open a venue for tenants to communicate their needs to the landlord, and for landlords to reiterate their rules to the tenants. Both can work towards making improvements and ensuring that the rental property is a safe and healthy place to live in.
How to time your rental property inspections
Local laws state that your tenants should be informed at least 24 hours before you conduct a property inspection. You should also let them know the length, purpose, and timing of the visit. Make sure that your tenant or a representative is present when you conduct the inspection, and never enter the premises without informing your tenant.
Pristine Property Management performs various inspections at intervals throughout the year. We perform Move-In & Move-Out Inspections where photos and videos of the property are secured, so that there is record of conditions before and after each tenant.
Interior inspections are completed every year prior to lease expiration. These inspections ensure that your property is in good condition, which subsequently serves as a recommendation of whether the lease should be renewed or not. In addition, exterior inspections of houses and multi-family properties are done every 6 months and all unit interiors are inspected once a year. Inspection findings are documented and reports inclusive of photos are sent to owners.
It is of utmost importance to do regular property inspections to make sure that your rental property does not fall into neglect. Contact us today for further information.