rental inspections

How to Inspect your Rental Property

A right that landlords seldom exercise is to enter the rental property for inspection.  Although we suggest planning far in advance, with as little as twenty-four hours notice, you may enter the property.

How to Inspect Your Rental Property

We assume you’re here because you have been, or have intentions of, inspecting your tenanted rental property. This is an important step to ensuring your real estate investment is a success.

To ensure good use of your time, we’ve broken down the basics of a rental property inspection:

Scheduling the Inspection

Always be respectful of your tenant’s rights but consider going one step further and being more accommodating than you have to.  As an example, scheduling inspections on short notice is not recommended, unless necessary.  Schedule a mutually convenient day and time well in advance.

Setting Expectations of the Rental Property Inspection

Communication is key! Therefore, tell your tenant the purpose of the inspection, what you’ll be doing, and how long you require.

Keeping Records

Record every detail of the inspection.  It will only seem unnecessary until it’s not.  Because you open yourself to potential financial and legal issues as a landlord, recording keeping is essential.  After you complete a report, get it signed. Alternatively, send an email to summarize everything. Include photos and clearly state your observations.  Finally, have them reply, acknowledging receipt. Date and time-stamped email act much like a signed report as evidence.

Take LOTS of photos

If you find a hole in the wall, you will have little to stand without evidence.  This is when photos and reports come in handy.

Take photos of every wall, ceiling, visible floor area, and appliance.  It may seem tedious or excessive but consistency in this practice will pay dividends.  Make sure that your final report or email contains all of these photos too.

Follow these steps and be well on your way to a successful real estate investment experience.

Inspecting rental properties accomplishes two things:

  1. Show your tenant that you care about the property and their enjoyment of it. Build rapport with your tenant.  The degree of care and respect you convey will typically be matched in kind by your tenant.  As a result, you’ll have few problems, consistent rent, and no surprises.
  2. At the chance your Tenant is problematic, finding damage in the property is due-cause for eviction.  The more evidence you have that your Tenant is in breach of contract or the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA), the quicker you’ll get them evicted.

At the end of the day, this is your INVESTMENT and you’ve got thousands of dollars invested. You owe it to yourself to ensure that it’s being maintained properly.