It’s in every landlord’s best interest to ensure that their respective properties and by extension, their respective tenants remain safe. Failing to regard safety with due importance is liable to lead to unsatisfied tenants, reduced renter retention, and possible legal problems. As such, property safety should be among every landlord’s top priorities. So, regardless of how new or well-kept your property is, make sure to employ the following measures.
Address Maintenance Issues as they Arise
Sitting on maintenance issues instead of addressing them in a timely manner can have serious consequences. Not only is this likely to draw the ire of tenants, but it’s also liable to compromise the overall safety of your rental property. Since many large-scale safety problems start off as relatively minor maintenance issues, it’s in your best interest to address the former before they’re able to become the latter. So, if you have a habit of placing maintenance issues on the backburner, now would be the time to amend your approach to property upkeep.
For starters, you’ll need to enlist the services of full-time maintenance personnel – especially if the property in question is a large multi-family rental. The more units and individual residents a property has, the more maintenance issues are going to spring up. And since most landlords are unable to address every maintenance request on their own particularly when it comes to larger properties – having a dedicated maintenance staff can be a boon to your upkeep efforts and help keep your rental safe for years to come.
If you don’t have the bandwidth to turn being a landlord into your full-time occupation, consider working with a highly-rated property management company. This will ensure that even in your absence, someone will be around to act as your proxy and efficiently delegate tasks to maintenance personnel.
Have the Property Inspected
Having your rental property inspected by a certified professional on a regular basis can be a great way to stay abreast of safety issues. An experienced inspector will be able to identify a host of emerging problems, ensuring that you’re able to tackle them before they’re able to place anyone’s safety at risk. The right inspector will also make you aware of any code violations they come across and make helpful recommendations regarding repairs and renovations. Additionally, keeping track of inspection results and code violations is often a hassle-free process in places that use cutting-edge municipal software.
Screen All Rental Applicants
Screening rental applicants can benefit landlords in a number of ways. For starters, a rigorous screening process can help you determine how likely an applicant is to remain current with rent. Since evicting tenants for nonpayment of rent is often an arduous process, proper screening stands to save you quite a few headaches. Secondly, the screening process can help you identify prospective renters who are liable to pose a danger to other residents and/or the property itself.
With an applicant’s permission, make sure to have a look at their criminal history. To be clear, past convictions shouldn’t necessarily prohibit someone from being allowed to rent from you. However, it’s also important to take the crime(s) of which an applicant was convicted into careful consideration. If these are offenses that could compromise the safety of other tenants and/or the property, taking a chance on them may not be in your best interest.
So, no matter how bothersome you find the screening process, you should never abstain from carrying it out. Just because someone is able to present themselves well in an in-person interview or phone conversation doesn’t mean they’d make a good tenant. If you simply can’t be bothered to undertake the screening process on your own, reach out to a good screening service or delegate this task to a property manager.
It’s only natural that landlords would strive to protect their respective rentals. After all, should any harm come to their properties, they’re liable to find their finances adversely impacted. Furthermore, if any tenants are inconvenienced or injured as a result of a landlord’s refusal to prioritize safety, lawsuits and other legal consequences are likely to follow. That being the case, no landlord can afford to regard safety as an afterthought. Fortunately, with the advice outlined above at your disposal, protecting a rental property should be well within your abilities.
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