Sarasota is one of the most expensive places to live in Florida, and that means that your tenants expect the best. If you let your rental property go into disrepair, you won't have tenants for long. You need to do regular rental property inspections to keep your property looking nice.
But when should those inspections happen? What should you look for, and what should you know before you start? We're here to answer those questions.
Read on for a quick and helpful rundown of the things you need to know about rental property inspections.
First: Consider Notice Requirements
Regardless of how often you choose to do rental property inspections, it's absolutely necessary for you to make sure you're giving proper notice. One of your landlord duties is to respect your tenants' right to privacy, and by not giving notice, you're not doing that. You may even be breaking rental property inspection laws.
A landlord must give "reasonable notice" before showing up at the tenant's home. "Reasonable notice" is at least 12 hours, but consider when you gave the notice. Texting a tenant at 10 pm, when they may already be asleep, and showing up at 10 am would not be responsible.
You may also only show up at a "reasonable time," which the state of Florida defines as between 7:30 am and 8 pm.
If the visit is an emergency, you can visit outside of the reasonable time and without notice, but make sure it's a genuine emergency before you do so. Most inspections are not emergencies.
Routine Inspections: Are They Necessary?
Many landlords maintain a low rental property inspection frequency. Is that a good idea?
You don't have to inspect every unit, but it's a good idea to do an inspection of your property as a whole seasonally. At a minimum, you should be doing it twice per year. During these inspections, you'll be looking at things like the HVAC system, plumbing, and electrical system.
This will allow you to catch any potential problems before they become much more significant (and expensive). If you don't live near your property, you can outsource these inspections to protect your investment.
Move-Ins and Move-Outs
Move-in and move-out inspections are, perhaps, the most important. This is how you document the condition of the property before tenants move in and check for damage when it's time for them to leave.
You can't reasonably charge a tenant for damage when they move out if you never did a move-in inspection. It's possible that the damage was already there, so it would be unfair to the tenant.
These inspections should happen at the beginning and end of a lease.
Don't Skip Rental Property Inspections
Rental property inspections help you keep your properties in good condition. If you want to protect your investment and have happy tenants, don't skip those inspections!
Unfortunately, rental property inspections can also be time-consuming. At Gulf Coast Property Management, we help landlords with inspections, marketing, and more. We'll make your life as a landlord a breeze and protect your investment.
Reach out today to learn more about how our property management services can help you.