There Are 11 Things That Landlords Should Do Annually To Cut Costs Significantly.
Your company may suffer if you put off fixing issues, but doing so will help prevent negative outcomes. Do you desire to be the best landlord ever to your tenants? Use this rental inspection checklist to stay organized and on top of the yearly tasks you should complete, such as necessary maintenance and money-saving tasks.
1. Lease Renewal
It's wise to re-up your tenants to a year-long lease agreement unless you intentionally rent on a month-to-month basis. In the majority of states, if you don't renew your annual lease each year, it will convert to a month-to-month lease.
A lease renewal should be made available to your tenant 90 days before it expires. You can either visit the renter in person or send the tenant a letter or email with the lease renewal documents. Be sure to include information on the existing lease as well as the details of the renewal, such as the monthly rent.
One piece of advice is to only sign a six- or nine-month lease at first when you are renting a property during the winter so that the renewal date falls during the summer, when rentals are more easily filled. Then, after that, you can renew with a one-year lease.
2. Check the market rent to make sure you are competitive.
Because of the changing nature of the rental market, market rent will eventually increase. Every year, you should check to make sure that all of your rents are about in line with what the market dictates; otherwise, you risk wasting good money.
Asking real estate professionals or nearby property managers will help you determine market rent. To verify if the rents at comparable properties to the one you manage are similar to yours, you might also explore the internet for them. You might need to adjust your rental pricing if they are out of line with those for nearby properties that are similar to yours.
Your property may be more competitive in the rental market if you raise the rent to reflect market rates. You may be losing money if you set your prices too low. Finding a tenant who will pay your price, however, may be challenging if they are too high.
3. Inspections of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide systems
Test your smoke alarms once a year as a favor to yourself. Check the carbon monoxide detectors as well, if your state mandates their installation in every residence.
Some tenants just discard beeping smoke or carbon monoxide monitors without changing the batteries. The owner of the property is accountable for this. By reducing the possibility of fires or other safety-related problems that could end up costing you significant time and resources, you can keep your tenants (and building) safe by assuring all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in functioning order.
As an alternative, you may insert a clause in the lease stating that each tenant is accountable for handling this responsibility. By doing this, the landlord would be shielded from any claims brought about by a fire or carbon monoxide leak.
4. Look for Water Leaks
Long-term costs associated with water leaks might be very high. Instead of going to places where it is required, like toilets or showers, water that leaks is lost to the environment.
Water is generally not cheap. Leaks could result in monthly water bills of several hundred dollars. Furthermore, leaks might result in expensive to repair water damage to floors and walls. Regular plumbing inspections and repairs are far less expensive than waiting until a leak becomes a major issue. Look closely at any wet patches on the ceiling and check sure there are no leaks coming from your water heater, drains, faucets, air conditioner, or any other water-using appliances.
Contact your contractor if there is a leak. To identify the next steps and obtain a price estimate, talk about your needs. We guarantee that the money spent on the issue will be worthwhile if a leak is fixed quickly.
5. Check to see if your keys works.
There are numerous reasons why tenants replace their locks. However, it's crucial that you have a functional key for each of your homes as a landlord so you may gain access (legally, of course) if necessary when the tenant is not at home. Nothing is more annoying than paying a maintenance worker by the hour and having them show up to do work only to discover that the door won't open with the key you provided them.
When you inspect your rental property annually, be sure you have the right keys.
Visit your nearest home depot for assistance if you need to duplicate a key.
6. Look up your insurance costs
The insurance industry is funny. They lure you to switch with absurdly low rates before swiftly starting to raise them. Every insurance provider says that customers will "save hundreds of dollars by switching to us," therefore it makes sense. Because of this, it's a good idea to compare prices at least once every year.
However, switching insurance carriers can be a pain, so only do it if you would save a lot of money or get much better coverage.
Look online or contact your nearby insurance agents to find out which businesses have the most affordable rates. Utilize unique offers and promos as well. You would save money if you switched to a company that rewards new members.
7 . Obtain up-to-date contact and emergency information for the tenant.
Tenants are humans, and people occasionally change their phone numbers. It's possible that the figures you compiled upon move-in have changed. It's crucial to annually verify this info with your tenants so that you have their most current phone numbers. Just to be thorough, acquire their email address and emergency phone numbers in addition to validating their phone number.
Each year, you can confirm with tenants via email, phone call, or in-person visit. If there is an urgent matter and you must contact them right away, this will avoid future issues.
8. Replace The Furnace's Filters
The tenant is definitely responsible for changing the furnace filters regularly, although they probably aren't. As a result, it is your duty as the landlord to ensure that this occurs.
A tenant's claim that outdated furnace filters impair air quality might land a landlord in legal danger. Additionally, it can present safety risks and start fires inside the house, which would be detrimental to the landlord in terms of insurance costs, legal actions, and property damage.
The furnace will also have to work harder if the filter is outdated or poorly fitted. This will result in the need for more frequent maintenance, which will be more expensive because it would not be necessary if the filters had been changed frequently.
In home improvement stores, furnace filters cost around $10, and replacing them isn't too challenging. However, you can ask the contractor to perform it for you if you don't know how to do it.
8. Tidy Up The Gutters
Your gutters will probably need to be cleaned of of leaves and other debris at least once a year if there are trees close to your rental property. It won't cost you much to hire a professional to clean your gutters if you don't feel comfortable doing it yourself. Maintaining appropriate water flow is essential to maintaining your property in top condition for as long as possible.
If external repair or landscaping is not specifically stated as the tenant's duty in the lease, the landlord is responsible for doing these duties.
9. Get your rental license renewed.
Your rental property may need to be registered or you may need a rental license, both of which typically need to be renewed annually. If you don't register, your tenant may receive financial compensation in various parts of the country. You will ultimately have to pay your tenant, so yes.
To register your rental property or license, get advice from local city or state authority. The majority of places offer online resources for landlords, including registrations that are good for one year. There are registration fees.
10. Show Appreciation
Last but not least, keep in mind that your tenants are the backbone of your business. Therefore, show your tenants that you care about them by doing something kind for them at least once a year. This might be as easy as sending them a Christmas card or giving them a call to wish them a happy new year and thank them for renting from you.
Tenant vacancy is a significant problem for cash flow. You'll discover that your tenants stay longer and are easier to work with the rest of the year if you let them know how much you value them.
Despite the fact that we are all extremely busy, there are duties that come with being a landlord in order to create a strong, long-lasting business.