As a property manager, you're in the business of protecting your clients' assets. There are a million other tasks that go along with the job, but the most important thing is to ensure that the properties you manage are consistently in good condition.
So how can you make sure that's the case? By conducting regular walk-throughs to help identify maintenance issues and ensure that the tenants aren't neglecting the property.
What is a property walk-through?
A property walk-though is when you or a professional visits a property with the intention of documenting the condition of the outside and inside, for the purpose of tracking maintenance issues and tenant wear.
It's a good practice to conduct property walk-throughs periodically, at least once or twice a year. That way you can check the interior and exterior, and confidently track the condition of the property in its entirety.
We recommend documenting the condition of your properties when a tenant moves out, before a new tenant moves in, and at least once per year during the lease. This also helps when it comes time to give security deposits back to tenants at the end of their lease (if applicable). But don't go overboard with too many walk-throughs - your tenants of course have the right to quiet enjoyment in the home.
How do you give tenants notice of a property walk-through?
Laws can be different in every state, but typically the landlord or property manager must give 24-48 hours written notice before entering the property. There is also language that states that the professional must conduct the property walk-through at a "reasonable" time during the day.
Why are property walk-throughs necessary?
- Opportunity to find and address maintenance issues
- Document tenant living conditions
- Discover any illegal activities
- Build a relationship with your tenants
- When tenants move-in/move-out
Condition reports and property walk-throughs
Conducting just a property walk-through isn't enough - it's critical to also document all the property details from the walk-through. If the property's condition is consistently documented, it'll help you keep track of maintenance issues, protect you from potential legal issues with tenants, and assist you when it comes time for tenants to move in or move out.
Using a service like Showdigs, you can be sure that all rooms and details get properly documented. Showdigs' condition reports usually include 40+ photos and contain detailed descriptions, so you don't have to actually visit the property to know the condition of it.
Scheduling a property walk-through with a tenant
Scheduling with tenants can be extremely difficult - from keeping up with the email/phone tag to answering all of their questions, it can definitely be a headache. And that's only for one of your residents! You could have hundreds of tenants, which means streamlining the process is critical.
Showdigs handles all tenant scheduling with an easy to use calendar that lets tenants choose when it's most convenient for them. All questions can be answered by an FAQ or a member of our live support team, which helps make tenants feel more at ease.
Once the date for the walk-through is confirmed, Showdigs sends out a trained, licensed real estate agent to conduct the property walk-through and complete a detailed condition report. The condition report and photos are then sent to the property manager as a PDF, so the whole process is super convenient and can be done without the property manager having to ever step in.
Example of a condition report
Interested in seeing what a Showdigs condition report looks like? Click here to download a free sample!