As a Property Manager, you know that a large part of your role involves performing routine inspections on every property you manage.
Unfortunately, however, there are many common mistakes that some Property Managers make when performing inspections, potentially leading to ongoing issues with the property, the tenants and the owner.
For this reason, we’ve put together a list of the top 12 mistakes that you need to be aware of so that you can avoid them when carrying out future routine inspections for your clients.
Why are routine inspections so important?
When a tenant enters into a rental agreement with yourself and the owner of the property, they agree to be responsible for the general upkeep of the property and leave it looking exactly as it did when they first arrived—beyond reasonable wear and tear.
Regular property inspections help to ensure the owner that the tenant is holding up their end of the agreement. If there are any issues with the property, then these can be tended to sooner rather than later through regular inspections.
Top 12 mistakes to avoid when performing routine inspections
Failing to confirm the inspection time with the tenant
Inspections are typically booked well in advance to help meet rental agreement timeframes and respect the tenant’s privacy.
To ensure your tenants don’t forget about their upcoming inspection, it helps to send one or two friendly reminders in the weeks and days leading up to it.
Sending an inexperienced trainee to inspect the property in your place
Some Property Managers choose to send trainees with no prior inspection experience in their place to perform routine inspections, believing that the process is relatively simple.
However, not only does this make for a poor inspection overall where items can be missed, but it can also lead to greater problems for you and your landlord in the future.
If you must send someone in your place, make sure they are adequately trained in performing a high-quality inspection beforehand.
- Booking too many inspections on the same day
Booking too many inspections on a single day only leads to mediocre performance during the last couple of inspections. You can get exhausted and any slight delay has a domino effect on the rest of your appointments.
Try to set yourself a limit for the number of daily inspections booked to avoid fatigue creeping in. It also helps to try and book inspections in the same area on the same day to decrease your travel time.
Getting complacent with inspections
While you may be bright and alert on the first inspection, fatigue can set in and it’s easier to overlook your standard processes and procedures as the day wears on. This can lead to complacency, which then leads to unwanted inspection outcomes and ongoing issues.
While you may have done inspections hundreds of times before, don’t forget to perform the same high-quality inspections every time and prevent any headaches in the future. This means thoroughly covering every room—both indoors and outdoors—no matter what.
If, for any reason, you cannot access a room at the time, make a follow-up booking to come back and inspect that room again soon.
Failing to address issues and provide feedback to the tenant
For whatever reason, some Property Managers may fail to act on any issues that they find when performing a routine inspection. Unfortunately, this only leads to bigger problems either at a future inspection or when the tenants leave the property.
Make sure that you always raise any issues immediately, both with your tenants and your landlords. Likewise, it’s also good practice to provide feedback to your tenants—whether good or bad—after each inspection to ensure that each party remains on the same page.
Failing to follow up on issues or required repairs
Much like failing to act on issues, failing to follow up on them is just as counterproductive to the inspection process.
Always make a note of and follow up on any issues or repairs that may need doing to ensure that they are resolved in due time. Never make assumptions.
Failing to take photos for the landlord
Most property owners don’t simply want to read their property report—they also want photo evidence to back up what the report says.
Make sure to take plenty of pictures to provide to your landlord as part of your inspection report.
Failing to compare the property to previous inspection reports
Sometimes, it can be difficult to remember the specifics of each property, especially if it’s one you haven’t visited before.
That’s why it’s important to use previous inspection reports and photos as a baseline to compare with the current condition of the property so that you can identify any issues or damage that may have happened since the last inspection.
Failing to understand the property’s special conditions
Much like previous inspection reports, you should always be aware of any special conditions attached to a property’s rental agreement, such as ‘no pets’ or ‘no access to the third bedroom’.
Failing to do so can cause you to miss obvious issues that need to be taken care of as part of the inspection process.
Being too harsh on the tenant
There is nothing to gain from approaching each inspection with the intent to pull the tenant up on the slightest details.
Of course, any issue that directly affects the condition of the property must be addressed. However, if the property is generally clean and tidy with no signs of damage, there’s no need to get super picky.
Be mindful that someone does still live there, so it’s not going to look like a display home all the time.
Failing to show appreciation to the tenant for their effort
Some tenants go to great trouble to ensure their home is looking extra neat and tidy for a routine inspection.
Recognising your tenant’s efforts will not only help to maintain your good relationship with them, but it will also encourage them to continue to take good care of the home moving forward – which is a benefit to everyone.
Failing to use a Property Management software solution
Technology can help to create great efficiencies in the routine inspection process, yet so many Property Managers fail to use it properly.
With the right Property Management software like PropertyMe, you can streamline high-quality inspections, minimise the inconvenience for your tenants and provide great reports for your landlords every time.
Simplify your routine property inspections with PropertyMe
At PropertyMe, we make property management a simple and easier process for all parties involved, so you can focus more on what you do best. PropertyMe helps you to conduct better inspections, keep track of calendars and checklists, access previous reports and photos, and easily generate new reports for your landlords.
Our software is the most feature-rich cloud-based property management solution in Australia. With an easy-to-use interface, automated workflows, mobile app and simple client access, you’ll have everything you need to perform routine inspections and manage your properties with ease.
Contact our product specialists to start your Onboarding Journey with PropertyMe today!