Inspecting your Chula Vista rental property is important because it documents the condition of your investment and ensures your tenants are following the terms of their lease. While you should inspect your property regularly, you also want to respect your tenant’s right to peaceful enjoyment of the property. You don’t want to violate their privacy, either. So we’ve provided you with a rental inspection checklist to help you navigate those boundaries.
We recommend you make three formal inspections of your rental property: at the beginning of a lease, during the tenancy, and after the tenant moves out. Use a rental inspection checklist for each inspection you conduct, and be sure to take photos to document what you find.
Rental Inspection Checklist
Move-In Inspection: Look for Maintenance and Repair Needs
When you’re conducting your move-in inspection, you need to make sure everything is working the way it should. Turn on every faucet, flush every toilet, check every outlet and turn on all the lights, appliances, and ceiling fans. You want your tenants to move into a home that’s habitable, safe, and functional. Take pictures of walls, ceilings, floors, countertops, and systems. This is your opportunity to accurately document the condition of the property at the time that you turn over the keys. Having this inspection checklist completed will help you at the end of the lease period, when you’re looking for tenant damage and making decisions about whether to charge the security deposit.
Mid-Lease Inspections: Look for Unreported Maintenance and Lease Violations
Schedule at least one inspection during the lease period with your tenants. Give them plenty of notice so they know you’re going to be in the property, and allow them to be present if they want to be. Your checklist for this inspection is pretty simple. You’re looking for any maintenance items that have not been reported by the tenants. Perhaps they didn’t notice the leak under the bathroom sink or the wobbly step leading up to their unit or the exterior lights that have burned out. You also want to make sure the tenants are following the terms of the lease agreement. If your property has a no-pet policy and you see dog bowls and leashes, you’ll want to address that with your tenants.
If your tenants are present during this inspection, take a moment to ask how things are going. This will help your relationship and increase the likelihood that your tenants will renew their lease. Being a responsive and communicative landlord will make tenants appreciate where they live.
Move-Out Inspections: Property Damage and Wear and Tear
The rental inspection checklist you use for the move-out inspection should be exactly the same as the checklist you used during the move-in inspection. You’re comparing the home’s condition now to the way it looked then. Some things will be simple wear and tear. Scuff marks on the wall from sofas, for example, are not the tenant’s responsibility. However, if there are large holes in the wall or you find a door has been ripped off its hinges, you can charge the security deposit for those repairs. Take pictures to show before and after property condition details.
These are just a few of the things to look for when you’re inspecting your Chula Vista rental property. If you have any questions or need any help, please contact us at Encore Realty.