The importance of rental property inspections
Rental property inspections serve as a crucial tool in maintaining a property's condition, ensuring tenant satisfaction and safety, while protecting the investment of property owners. And whether you’re the person renting out a property or its owner, it pays to fully understand the property inspection process.
This blog post delves into the importance of rental property inspections for both tenants and landlords, while walking you through what to expect before, during, and after a property inspection.
Why are inspections needed?
It’s standard practice for property managers and owners to conduct routine property inspections to ensure a property is well-maintained and pick up on any repairs or maintenance requirements.
Inspections are also conducted when a tenant moves in or out to document a property's condition at the beginning and end of the lease, and may also occur in response to one-off maintenance requests or concerns raised by tenants.
How frequently inspections can be carried out depends on which state the property is located in and the agreed lease terms.
The inspection process
After providing the tenant with adequate advance notice per state laws and the lease agreement, the property manager will visit the property to evaluate its overall condition inside and out, checking for any damage, repairs required, and potential safety hazards.
The inspection is also an opportunity for tenants to raise any maintenance requests and discuss any issues with the property. Such feedback can be invaluable for keeping on top of maintenance and improving the overall rental experience for owner and tenant.
The property manager will document their findings, any issues or concerns identified, and may also take photos as visual evidence of the property's condition.
What to expect as a tenant
To receive advance notice: Tenants should expect to receive advance notice of the inspection, in accordance with state laws and the lease agreement. This allows you to prepare beforehand and make arrangements to attend if you want to.
To attend the inspection if you choose to: As a tenant you have the right to be present during the inspection if you wish, however, you are not obliged to attend.
The opportunity to raise any issues: The inspection is an opportunity to raise any specific concerns, maintenance needs or safety issues with the property manager.
Your privacy to be respected: property managers should only inspect relevant areas of a property, avoiding the need to disturb tenants’ personal items or invade their privacy.
If you can, do a little bit of preparation: while not obligatory, it is helpful if the property is clean and tidy for the inspection. This can make the process quicker for all involved and allow any issues to be easily seen and documented.
What to expect as an owner
Inspections are carried out professionally: Your property manager should ensure inspections are conducted per the relevant legal requirements and best-practice industry procedures, while respecting the tenant’s rights and privacy.
To receive a detailed report: You should receive a detailed report of the inspection findings by your property manager. This not only serves as a record of the property’s condition but may also come in useful in the event of a dispute.
To respond promptly to maintenance requirements: After the inspection you should be informed of any repairs required, and how urgently, by your property manager. Your property manager may also make recommendations on preventative maintenance and any works that could help increase your return on investment.
Timely maintenance is crucial for tenant satisfaction and property upkeep, so be sure to respond promptly if you need to approve any repair requests.
Your tenants are kept informed: Your property manager should also communicate the inspection findings with tenants, providing them with a clear report of the property's condition along with how and when any identified issues will be addressed.
As you can see, inspections play a vital role in maintaining the condition of rental properties, ensuring tenant satisfaction, and protecting the interests of both owners and tenants.
Tenants should expect their rights to be respected, and landlords should expect property managers to conduct inspections with diligence and care. When carried out professionally and fairly, rental property inspections can contribute to a positive rental experience for everyone involved.
To learn more about Hockingstuart’s property management services please contact your local Hockingstuart office or visit our leasing page. Explore the process of renting and search our latest available properties for rent here.