As property managers, we are very familiar with the rental turnover cycle. Tenants move in; tenants move out. It is a part of life and there is some sense of both chaos and harmony knowing that the cycle continues on.
If you have yet to start working with a property management company, you may find yourself dealing with all the details involved with a tenant turnover on your own. If so, we have some tips that may help you make the transition go more smoothly or you may choose to use our services here at Thayer & Associates.
There are things that a landlord or property management company should do both before the former tenant moves out and before the current tenant moves in. Read on for some ideas to make this as stress-free as possible.
Before Your Tenant Moves Out
As part of your responsibility as a landlord, “It’s your legal responsibility to provide a comfortable, healthy and safe living environment to your tenants, which often entails performing some essential repairs and upgrades,” according to Rentec Direct online.
This may mean cleaning the rental unit, making repairs, and ensuring that the unit is safe for the next tenant. You may also want to make upgrades that could increase the value of your rental and attract reliable tenants for future years.
Conduct a Walkthrough
As soon as your tenant puts in their notice that they will be moving, you should schedule an informal walkthrough with them to discuss issues such as cleaning that may fall under tenant responsibilities, as well as maintenance, repairs, updates, and landscaping issues that would be in the landlord’s domain.
Make a list of all that should be done prior to a new tenant moving in and prioritize each task.
Schedule Professional Services
Depending upon the condition of the unit and how much work/improvements you may want to complete, scheduling professional services such as a cleaning crew, plumber, electrician, or general contractor should be done well in advance so you can have the work done in a timely manner.
Establish Move Out Guidelines
Before your tenant moves out, be sure to give clear guidelines about what the apartment or unit should look like upon handing over the keys. For instance, many property managers require a clean apartment including the stove, refrigerator, and bathrooms. Without the area being free and clean of any leftover property or belongings, landlords often stipulate the loss of the security deposit.
Another scenario to consider is if walls have been painted or more permanent changes have been made, with or without your consent, be sure to stipulate what should be done to prepare the unit for the next tenant.
After Moving Day
Once your tenant has moved, there are a flurry of tasks that should be completed by the manager, landlord, or company responsible for the property.
First, the locks should be changed by a professional to ensure that a fresh set of keys will be given for a secure unit.
From there, many property managers spend a few days painting, cleaning, and repairing any areas that need it. Updates to areas like the kitchen and bathrooms could be done during this window when the unit is not occupied.
If there are carpenters, windows, or appliances that need cleaning this is the time to get that done as well.
Tenant turnover is inevitable, but having a sound plan prepared in advance can help make the transition go smoothly. Tell us your transition suggestions below or on our social media pages. If you are in need of tenant turnover help, whether it is marketing or completing the tasks needed to rent out your property, talk to our team about using our services here at Thayer & Associates.