Carrying out inspections on the properties that you own is important for a number of reasons. Not only does it allow you more perspective on how your tenants are treating your property, but it also allows for you to identify maintenance issues that may need to be addressed and offers your tenants peace of mind in the knowledge that their landlords take care of their properties.
However, those who are new to property management tend to struggle with inspections for a number of reasons, so here we offer a few useful tips to keep in mind before you conduct them.
Always Inform Tenants
Turning up unannounced may seem like a good way to catch tenants out, especially if you feel as though your property is being mistreated, but doing so can shatter the bond of trust that you need to have with your tenants. In essence, you are invading the tenant’s privacy if you turn up without any notice, especially if you let yourself into an empty property. As such, you always need to provide written notice in advance to allow tenants to prepare for your arrival.
Keep A Schedule
As you purchase more properties it stands to reason that you are going to need to conduct more inspections. Falling behind in this can again lead to your tenants becoming distrustful of you, so it is important that you find some way to schedule your inspections. Online calendars are great in this regard, as they can allow you to set reminders for when the notice of inspection needs to be sent out, in addition to helping you keep track of properties that haven’t been inspected for a while.
Know What You’re Looking For
A cursory look around the property once you are conducting the inspection isn’t going to do. Instead, it is a good idea to create a checklist of the specific things that you want to check, such as the plumbing, electrical outlets, condition of the carpets and the locks on the doors. Run through this list during your inspection, while also ensuring that your tenants have the opportunity to raise any issues of their own.
Respect Tenant Privacy
It is still possible to violate tenant privacy, even if you have provided advance notice of the inspection. Remember that your property is somebody’s home and that there is a certain line that should not be crossed. Don’t go rummaging through cupboards, wardrobes or medicine cabinets as it is not your place to know what they contain. Instead, keep your focus on the fundamentals of the property itself.
Update Your Records
Once you have completed the inspection it is important that you update your records accordingly. Make note of anything that you find and ensure that the inventory for the property is accurate and up-to-date. This record can then be used for making improvements and for your later inspections of the same property.
Of course, a property management service, like the one offered by Hills Estate, can take all of the hassle of inspections out of your hands. If you would like to find out how, please contact us to speak to a representative.