Today I want to talk to you about inspections. I hear you say:

“Why do I need to do inspections?” “Am I allowed to do inspections?” Well, here’s some answers that we’ll help you through.

With regards to the inspections, are you allowed to do them?

Yes you are, it’s your property and you’re entitled to carry out the inspections as long as you provide the tenant with sufficient notice. There should be a clause in your tenancy agreement of how much notice you should give to your tenant, normally within 24 or 48 hours is sufficient notice enough in order to conduct an inspection on your property.

How often should you do them?

I would advise that you conduct inspections every three to six months on your property depending on how long the tenants have been in the property. If they’ve only just moved in, you want to give them a couple of months to settle in, so do it within the first three months, then I would do it every six months. If the tenants have been fantastic and they’ve been in there for a number of years, I would maybe do it once or twice a year. Obviously if they’re good tenants and they’re paid on time, why do you need to inspect it all the time?

When you do an inspection, what do you look for?

So you want to obviously make sure that you’re looking at the areas in which the tenants are keeping the property so:

  • Are they using the hoover?
  • Are there any cobwebs in the corners?
  • Is the grass always cut?
  • Those sorts of things.
  • Also look at the property itself;
  • Are there any cracks?
  • Are there any seals that need replacing in due course?
  • Any areas of upcoming maintenance issues that you want to try and resolve as soon as possible?

With regards to evidence, what sort of evidence do you take on these inspections?

I would make sure that you do take as much evidence as possible. Reason being is if you’ve got the inventory at the start of the property, it shows what the condition is like, you’ve got your inspection reports during the course of the tenancy and then you have your checkout report at the end of the tenancy and which way the tenants have left.
If you’ve got no evidence and the tenants have always had the grass overgrown, how can you claim to have the garden sorted out at the end of the tenancy, if there’s no evidence there to back it up?

Evidence is key, it’s one thing I would like to remind you.

When you are doing the evidence, take photos of each room and any areas of concern. So for example if the grass is overgrown and it’s the height of summer, you obviously expect it to be well maintained, so you would take photos of that.
Try and make sure there’s date stamps on them as well so then again you’ve got all your evidence there.

The other thing you want to look out for is right to rent checks on your tenants, you will need to make sure that these are up to date and valid. So when you’re at the properties make sure the tenants have supplied you with an updated copy of their passport, visas or right to rent documentation and take a photo of it as well for your records so you have got it to make sure that you are covered.

If you have any questions with regards to this or you would like to know more, please contact me.

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