We strongly recommend that you perform annual inspections at your occupied rental property, and there are a few important reasons that it’s a good idea.
At Foundation Homes, when we manage our properties, we always perform an annual inspection, and it usually occurs right before the lease renewal. When we talk to our new clients who were once self-managing landlords, we find out that almost nobody does this. However, you should strongly consider it.
Annual Inspections Provide Preventative Maintenance Opportunities
There are a lot of small, easy-to-miss things that may be going unnoticed by your tenant in your property. Your tenant may not think about these small problems, or they are trying to be good tenants who don’t complain frequently. It’s considerate when tenants hesitate before bothering you with small repair issues, but you don’t want to leave those small problems because they tend to grow big, more complicated, and more expensive.
Little things that go undetected can easily and quickly become big problems. The most common things we find during our annual inspections are leaks. A small leak under the sink can be a simple fix costing $250 if you handle it right away. However, if that leak is left for two or three years, the moisture will do terrible damage. By the time you realize what has happened, you’ll find yourself with a $20,000 black mold problem. During your annual inspection, check all the sinks. Look for leaks and other small problems and take care of them right away. Encourage your tenants to make those maintenance requests, no matter how inconsequential they might seem to be.
Annual Rental Property Inspections Prevent Hidden Issues
Another reason to do annual inspections is that you can discover things that you might not have known otherwise. This is especially important when it comes to enforcing the terms of your lease. It’s common for landlords to find an undocumented pet during an inspection. Or, maybe you will notice that your tenant is becoming a hoarder and there are safety and cleanliness issues to address. You can serve notices to try to cure these types of things.
Respecting Tenant Rights During Inspections
You must keep in mind that you cannot simply go to the property without notice in order to perform an inspection. You shouldn’t stop by just for the sake of looking around. You have to have a specific reason, and you have to respect the tenants’ rights when it comes to entering the home. So, be sure you are checking for something specific. Your lease agreement could mention your annual preventative maintenance inspection.
Annual inspections protect your property and ensure your tenants are performing the way you expect them to. Make sure you get them done.
If you need a professional to take care of the inspections at your Marin rental property, please contact us at Foundation Homes International. As we said, it makes sense for us to conduct them towards the lease renewal period, and we would be happy to serve as your property management resource.