So the tenant has paid you the first and last months rent, signed the rental agreement and arranged a move in date. Your hard work is now done… or is it? One of the most overlooked aspects of the leasing process is move in and move out inspection reports. Yes, they take some time to complete, but they are crucial if you have damage disputes with your tenant(s) down the line. If you don’t have proof of the condition of the property prior to move-in, the courts are likely to side with the tenant in most cases.
If you want an easy to use mobile inspection app (and more), visit our website by clicking here.
Have the Tenant Present
If possible, it’s always best to have the tenant present when doing the inspection. That way, when it comes to signing the inspection report, both the tenant and landlord are at full agreement. This also gives you the ability to go over any important maintenance details (changing heat pump filters etc.) in person. If your unit has hardwood flooring, you should advise the tenant to use felt pads for their furniture. Some of our clients provide these for their tenants prior to move-in in a ‘welcome basket’.
What to Look For
It’s important to be as detailed as possible (look inside cupboards, under sinks, check outlets and switches). Here’s a quick list of structural items to look for:
- Ceilings and Walls: Look for dents, holes and cracks, as well as scuff marks that don’t rub off
- Floors: Look for stains or discolouration in carpets, tears on linoleum, cracked or chipped tiles, and any dents, scuffs or scratches on hardwood floors. On move-out, make sure you inspect the unit AFTER the tenant has removed their furniture. It is highly likely their furniture could have scratched your hardwood floors if the items weren’t resting on felts.
- Trim (i.e. moldings): look for stains, scuffs or cracks.
- Bathroom: Make sure all faucets work without leaking (looking under the sink with the water running) and have sufficient water pressure. Check for any chips or scratches on your fixtures, and be sure to look at the floor, ceiling and walls.
- Exterior doors and windows: A commonly forgotten item. Make sure they seal properly (if you pay the utilities, this could also help reduce your utility bill), and look for any signs of water (if applicable).
- Deck/patio/balcony: Check for any chipped stone/cracked boards/exterior siding.
- Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
- If the tenant has a storage area, make sure its empty and locked.
Make sure to take any photos of damage using your mobile phone or a camera, and append the photos to the report. You should list the photos as an appendix, and reference them in the report.
The Inspection Report
We’ve found a great inspection report you can use for free here. It gives you a good idea of what to look out for. Make sure both you and the tenant sign the inspection report confirming your agreement on the property’s condition.
Our cloud-based leasing solution also includes a property inspection app that you can use on any device with an internet connection. It allows you to take photos, write comments, and add different rooms for each property. It also incorporates digital signatures, and emails a signed copy of the report to both the landlord and tenant(s). It’s as easy as pressing a few buttons, snapping photos, and using your finger to sign! Think of what you could do with all of your saved time…
Feel free to email with any questions at [email protected].
If you are looking for an easy way to manage your rental properties online, visit us at www.yuhu.io. We make lease generation, online marketing, payment collection, and managing your rental units as easy as clicking a button!