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7 Issues to Address Before and When a Tenant Moves In

Do you know what to do before a tenant moves in? Prior to welcoming tenants into your rental, you need to be sure of a few things. Taking care of these areas will make the transition smoother and help you give a good first impression!

1. Clean the rental.

If your rental unit had a previous occupant, you'd want to make sure that it's clean before move-in day. Pay attention to the toilet, refrigerator, tub, and countertops. Hiring a professional cleaning service will not only save you time, but it also ensures exceptional results. 

2. Repair any damage.

Damage can develop over time in a rental, and you may not be aware of it. This could include anything from a broken window lock to holes in the walls to non-working smoke alarms. Such damages can simply be cosmetic in nature, or they could be something that jeopardizes your tenants' safety.

3. Change the locks.

It's worth changing the locks between tenants to keep your premises reasonably secure. This protects the rental from unwanted visits and safeguards a new tenant's belongings. If you find that a lock has been damaged, replace it. Meanwhile, if it isn't damaged, re-key the lock instead. 

4. Take photos before the arrival of a tenant.

When welcoming a new tenant, it can be tempting to hand over the keys right away. But keep in mind that property damage is a common issue between tenants and landlords. The last thing you'd want is to not have any proof of the original condition of the rental in case a tenant refuses to admit responsibility of any damage. 

It would be wise to take photos of your rental before a new tenant arrives. Be sure to capture every room and other details in the unit. Conduct a move-in inspection with a tenant as well. 

5. Check for safety hazards.

Landlords should ensure that their rental premises are safe for people to live in. Check that your building conforms to current safety codes. Keep outdoor areas well-lit and free from hazards. See to it that smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are all working. Disclose any environmental toxins that are present.  

6. Go through a tenant's requests.

A new tenant may have specific requests. For example, the request for a certain wall paint color or installation of a washer or dryer. If the request is more of a personal preference than a need, it's up to you to decide whether you're going to honor it. 

7. Offer neighborhood advice.

Got tenants who are new to the area? Help them feel more comfortable and lessen the stress of moving by giving tips on navigating the place. Tell them where they can buy groceries, which dry cleaner is affordable, or which restaurant has the best food. If a tenant has any question, make sure they can contact you.

This simple checklist should help you keep track of essential tasks when preparing the rental for new tenants. If you need further education about landlording, do check out our complete video e-course

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