Maintaining your investment property is in your best interests both in terms of attracting and keeping good tenants, and retaining the value of the property over time.
In this post, we share practical tips to help you make sure your investment property stays in good condition over the course of its tenanting days.
Tenants can have a massive impact on a property’s maintenance requirements. Are they willing to do their bit to take care of the property? As a landlord, you are responsible for the majority of the maintenance and repairs for the property, while the tenant agrees to keep the home clean and tidy. However, there are some minor maintenance tasks you can request your tenants do as part of your tenancy agreement—namely mowing the lawns, weeding the garden and replacing the smoke alarm batteries.
Having a tenant screening process in place can help mitigate the risk of signing on tenants who will neglect and/or damage your property. A screening process can include interviews, personal and work references, checking the tenant’s records on the Tenancy Information NZ database, and a criminal background check.
If you use a property manager or real estate agency to find your tenants, you may also have further access to rental databases and records that the general public does not, which adds an extra layer of security.
If you are self-managing your rental property(ies), regular inspections are paramount. Inspections are your chance to not only check the state of the property but also uncover minor issues early, such as a leaky tap, before they become a major and potentially expensive problem.
Legally, landlords can inspect a property as frequently as every four weeks. However, this constant surveillance will likely wear thin on your tenants. Most landlords inspect their properties one or two times a year, with some opting for quarterly inspections.
Important! You must give at least 48 hours notice before an inspection and conduct it within 14 days of giving notice to your tenants about it. You must also specify the day and carry the inspection out between 8am and 7pm.
Need help keeping on top of your rental maintenance? Download our complete investment property maintenance checklist to ensure your investment retains its value.