It’s hardly uncommon for people who are purchasing a home to have a home or property inspector come review the property for any potential issues they should be aware of. In fact, it’s advisable to protect oneself against incurring surprise costs or faulty construction. However, many landlords and property managers forego property inspection services on their own properties, and in our opinion, this is a mistake that can lead to unpleasant surprises. Why should you invest in property inspections? We’ll explain.
Protect Your Property, Protect Your Business
First and foremost, regular property inspections will help you protect yourself and your business. Whether you’re considering a new property or maintaining one you already own, an inspection helps you keep tabs on the state of the building and land. As a landlord, you’re responsible for the safety and maintenance of your properties, and it’s always best to know ahead of time whether everything meets up to local building safety laws or whether you need to invest in new equipment or repairs. Improperly maintained buildings can result in messy and prolonged legal battles, which will inevitably be far more expensive than repairing a deck or replacing a water heater.
Any good inspector will review your property to tell you where things currently stand, and it’s an excellent idea to make it standard practice to have inspections performed before move-in and after move-out. While relying on tenants to report any issues with the home can give you a basic idea of the property’s condition, with an inspector, you always know you’re getting a detailed and accurate report. This will help you determine how much of a tenant’s security deposit needs to be repaid or kept, as well as giving you a full picture of the wear and tear on the home or apartment.
Learn What to Fix and Where to Add Value
Beyond simply reporting on the places in the home that need touch-ups or repairs, property inspectors may also be able to offer recommendations for updates that will add value to the property, allowing you to plan ahead and create a budget for improvements. If your area is enacting new local building codes or laws, your inspector will keep abreast of these changes and let you know how to make sure your property is up to date. This will save you a great deal of time, considering that you won’t have to keep tabs on every local law in addition to all your other business responsibilities.
Routine inspections should also be performed at preset intervals, allowing you to regularly assess the state of your property. As always, consult your local laws and be sure to give tenants proper notice if you will be entering the property at any time. It should be noted that you can perform an external inspection at any time without notice, but if you are entering the property, the tenants should know ahead of time. Requesting the tenant be home when you perform the inspection also gives you a chance to ask questions or discuss necessary repairs, as well as let them know what they’ll have to repair themselves before move-out.
As you can see, property inspections offer a variety of benefits, and working with a professional service will take a load off your back. In order to have the best landlord experience, you should also be screening your tenants to make sure you find good matches for your properties. We recommend our RentalConnect program as an added tool for selecting the right tenants for your property. RentalConnect offers property owners and landlords a great alternative to the expense of full tenant screening. This service requires no on-site visit, sign-up, or membership fees, making it extra convenient. The $34.95 service fee is paid by the applicant. Available 24/7, RentalConnect is fast, easy, secure, and delivers reports needed to make an informed decision, including a credit report, a national criminal search, and a national eviction search.
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