You’ve managed to rent out your property, your tenants have moved in and seem to be living peacefully. But you want to go see your property. Should you? You want to see how your tenants are doing but don’t want to disturb them. So what should you do?
As a landlord you should really try to swing by your property at least once every few months. So here are some good reasons for you to visit your property:
1. Show your tenants you care
Go round to see your tenants after they’ve settled in and at quarterly to six monthly intervals during the tenancy as it sends a very clear message that you’re keeping an eye on your property – and on them. It also gives them a chance to let you know if there’s anything wrong.
2. Double check who (or what) is living there
It’s not uncommon for tenants to sub-let properties at a higher rent than they’re paying the landlord to make some extra cash, sometimes even turning living rooms into bedrooms or dividing rooms up with plasterboard to squeeze extra people in. Yes – it happens! How many articles do we see in the news on a regular basis of these rogue landlords cramming in as many tenants as possible? Whats to say tenants aren’t doing the same?
More common is the tendency for tenants to invite friends, partners and their extended family to move in without telling the landlord. You might be fine with this, but if not, you should take the proper legal steps to remove them as soon as possible.
And what about pets? Your tenant may have decided after they moved in to get the odd goldfish or better yet, a few dogs. There have even been occasions when tenants have “forgotten” to mention they have a cat or a dog. So its best to check and if required, add a ‘Pet Clause’ to the rental agreement making your tenants responsible for any damage that might be caused by pets and any extra cleaning required at the end.
3. Look out for maintenance issues
Don’t always rely on tenants to let you know of any damage to the property because unless it directly inconveniences them, they might not care. Not all tenants want to disturb their landlords with little maintenance issues – but wouldn’t it be better for you as a landlords – as well as for your tenants – to sort out these issues sooner rather than later?
4. Cannabis farms
While it’s unlikely your tenants are growing dope in your living room, you never can tell what’s going on behind closed doors. It’s unusual but not unheard of for tenants to turn rental homes into cannabis farms, it happens quite often and the first you may hear of it is when the police come knocking around to let you know they’ve smashed down the door to your property!
5. To validate your insurance policy
Some landlord insurance sometimes states that rented properties must be inspected at least once every six months, either by the landlord or their agent. Failure to do so could invalidate your policy. So for this reason, its always best to ensure property inspections are arranged with tenants either in writing or via email and keep a copy of the appointment, just in case.
Bearing the above in mind, its always best to make sure you keep a short report of your findings from the inspections. Keep the report safe, so you can use it to check your property when the tenants do vacate.
Carry out a statement of inventory prior to your tenants move in so you and your tenants know what was originally in the property as well as the condition of the property. Or better yet, get a professional inventory carried out by a third party. Don’t know anyone? Contact us on 01924 477999 and we can arrange an inventory on your behalf.