How To Self-Inspect A Rental Property Before Signing The Agreement

Managing a Rental Property

How To Self-Inspect A Rental Property Before Signing The Agreement

March 10, 2021

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Are you looking to rent a property for the first time? If yes, chances are that you will make the common mistakes that everyone else does. To save you from making those mistakes, we will be talking about some effective tips to self-inspect any rental property. By practicing these tips, you will eventually be able to ensure that the rental property is in good condition, and you are making the right decision by renting it.

Without wasting any more time, let’s get right into those tips.

  1. Interior paint

One of the first things that you need to notice when inspecting a property that you are about to rent is the condition of the paint. Go through all the rooms, one by one, looking for any signs of wear and tear, mold, or water damage. If you find any, point it out to the landlord instantly. Not being careful about the same might lead to trouble later.

  1. Flooring and carpeting 

Just like interior paint, it is always a good idea to inspect the floors. If the floors are carpeted, make sure you look for any stains or damage of any sort. It’s good if the entire floor and carpeting are in as good as new condition. However, just like the paint, if you find any signs of carpet being worn out or stained or some damage in the flooring, make sure to let the landlord know about it.

  1. Windows and doors

Inspect all the windows and doors of the house to ensure that they are in good, working condition. Pay special attention to the locks and latches. One important thing to consider when checking windows is to note the drafts coming through the windows. This is important because without proper sealing you might not get proper insulation in the property, which can be really troublesome.

  1. Heating and Air Conditioning 

Thoroughly check the heating and air conditioning of all the rooms of the property. Check whether the vents, radiators, compressors, and thermostats are working properly or not. If you witness any signs of weariness or parts of the heating/cooling system dirty, bring it to the notice of your landlord. Remember, you will be paying more bills if the home is not properly insulated – so make sure you inquire thoroughly about the same from the landlord before you rent the property.  

  1. Electric supply

While it may seem like common sense, you won’t believe how many people actually ignore to check all the switches of the home for proper functioning and end up facing troubles later. Before you sign the rental agreement, ask the landlord to test all the electrical outlets for their proper functioning. Get to know about the operation of every switch, and see if all of them are working properly or not. Be it fans, electric bulbs, or any other fixture, make sure to perform a thorough check.

  1. Plumbing

Plumbing problems are the most difficult to be noticed since they are not exposed to the naked eye. However, be the smart tenant before signing the agreement and carefully check for any type of water leakage or plumbing fault. Any signs of wetness, excessive moisture, or mold damage should ring the alarm bells for you. Assess the kitchen and washroom with even more care, as these are the most prone to water leakages for obvious reasons. 

  1. Home Appliances

Another important thing you cannot afford to miss out on checking is the home appliances. This means equipment like dishwasher, stove, refrigerator, washer, and dryer. Ask about their functioning, if you need to, and note any repair work, if required. Also, don’t forget to look for any signs of damage, scratches, or any similar thing that you would like to highlight to your landlord. 

  1. Smoke Detectors and Safety Equipment

Apart from all the basic things mentioned above, a critical element that you cannot afford to ignore at any cost is the smoke detector and safety equipment installed on the property. Ask for a demonstration of the safety equipment to see whether it works properly or not. Make sure that smoke detectors are installed on every floor, and are in perfect working condition.

  1. Home Exterior

Last, but certainly not the least, the thing you need to check is the home exterior. From the yard to the fence, make sure to check all these elements thoroughly. You don’t want to miss out on any important thing and end up regretting it after you sign the agreement. 

Apart from these 9 important elements, one key thing you must not forget to check is the neighborhood. Inquire about the people living in the vicinity to get an idea of potential troublemakers, like barking dogs, unkempt yards, and so on. They might not be visible when you are renting the property, but they can be your worst problems once you move in. it is advisable to invest time in detecting them beforehand rather than repenting later. 

Don’t forget to document everything

The last piece of advice that we have for you is to document everything that you notice during your home inspection. Click pictures wherever possible, so that you can use them as a reference in the future, whenever or wherever required. Documenting the details of the property and everything that comes with it will help you keep a record for the future.

And you are ready to move!

Successfully completing all the above-motioned steps, and not finding any serious issues, will mean that the property is in good condition. Once you have that assurance, and you have documented everything, there is no reason not to sign the agreement.

But remember, to thoroughly read the terms of the lease agreement before you sign it. From the security deposit to details of the property, and the equipment included in it to the utilities and everything else – make sure that you have a thorough knowledge of everything. You don’t want any undisclosed details of the agreement to pop up later. 

As you can see, doing a self-inspection of a rental property is not rocket science. All it requires is a little awareness, and presence of mind to look for any sign of damage in the property. If you can do that you can stay rest assured that you renting the right property.

So, if you are going to rent a property don’t forget to keep these 9 points in mind while inspecting it.

All the best.