INSPECTIONS the importance of property inspections February 27, 2019, 18:30 With the typically showery September now behind us, landlords should have a keen eye on their properties to inspect for any potential water damage. Property inspections happen for a number of reasons. They can happen at the beginning or end of a tenancy, following a period of inclement weather, or just to maintain a mutual trust between the renter and the landlord. By working with a trusted property management specialist, landlords can take the stress out of these inspections and leave them to experts who have the right tools and knowledge of building regulations to ensure they are thorough. As a property owner, when you sign up to a property management service, you will be informed about three different types of inspections: The moving-in inspection As the name suggests, this takes place prior to the new tenant moving in. This is the most thorough of all the inspection types, and will involve a meticulous noting of every object in the property, from cooking appliance serial numbers to light fittings, details of appliance inspections and damage to walls and ceilings. It is also advisable that new tenants make notes of anything that comes to their attention when they move in, for example, cracks. This type of inspection is so important because it is what landlords can refer back to during the moving-out inspection (below) and can be used as evidence for any discrepancies between the tenants and the property owner. The periodic inspection These are perhaps the most controversial of all inspections, as some tenants may not be as agreeable to them as others. They typically happen twice per year, predominantly just to ensure everything is in order, but also for when a tenant’s contract is up for renewal. This inspection will involve a quick scan of the property, taking no longer than 10 minutes, to ensure no appliances are broken, no structural damage is apparent, and that no rules are being broken e.g. unauthorized pets. Tenants are advised at least 48 hours in advance, and they must ensure all children have a guardian with them and all pets (subject to landlords’ agreements) are secure. These inspections are so important because they help the landlord to establish trust with their tenant, ensuring they stick to the rules and keep the home in a good state of repair. These inspections can influence renewal decisions and therefore encourage the tenants to maintain the property accordingly. The moving-out inspection Finally, during the moving-out inspection, landlords and tenants are encouraged to look at the details from the original moving-in inspection. This helps to smooth out any issues that may have been raised between the tenant and the owner. Again, this is a more thorough inspection, taking note of the same focal points as the moving-in inspection, but referring back to the original material. These inspections are crucial for landlords because they need to decide how much deposit to deduct, if any, to cover repairs. Despite misconceptions, it is in landlords’ interest to keep this to a minimum, as time spent on repairs delays the moving-in of the next tenant. Let us help you through your next inspection Ideally, every landlord wants a tenant who pays on time, keeps their property clean and follows the rules. By assigning a property management company, property owners can enjoy the benefits of a meticulous inspection process in line with current laws and regulations.