If there's anything that strikes fear into a tenant's heart, it's this two-word phrase: property inspections.
Often, tenants will work the situation up in their heads, believing that their property managers are looking for reasons to fine or otherwise penalize them. The endeavor may become so stressful for all parties that you might be tempted to skip an annual inspection or two just to avoid the hassle.
However, the reality of the situation couldn't be further from the truth. Regular inspections can actually help you stay up to date on maintenance and repairs, maintain the actual dollar value of your real estate portfolio, and generally improve the quality of life of your tenants.
Maintain Property Value
If you leave your commercial property to degrade over time, you're effectively losing money on your investment. With consistent property inspections, you can make minor upgrades to your properties and catch small items before they become big issues. You'd be surprised how much a fresh coat of paint and other minor touch-ups can do to maintain the freshness of your space.
Increase Tenant Satisfaction
This may seem counterintuitive, especially since tenants seem to universally cringe when it's time for their annual inspection. They're likely to feel more sympathetically, though, once they realize that you're utilizing the time to provide them with better service and well-kept properties.
By proving to your tenants that you're responsive and committed to offering high-quality rental space throughout their tenancy, they're much more likely to work with you when you need something from them and to commit to lease renewal year after year.
Weatherize Your Property
For properties that are currently vacant, you'll likely need to do some weatherizing at the change of seasons, particularly for the fall and winter. Take a few minutes to check each of your properties for working utilities, HVAC systems, and water pipes.
Check on Long-Term Tenants
Usually, when you have a long-term tenant, it means that you have a strong working relationship with that individual or business. However, just because you're on good terms with each other, it doesn't mean that you shouldn't check in once in a while to see how things are going.
Consistent property inspections can help you see if a tenant is showing a tendency toward disrespecting the property, whether that's through property damage, letting trash pile up, or keeping the space in a way that could cause safety concerns. Catching these signs early on allows you to have a conversation with the tenant and encourages behavior change. If you notice continued issues, you can either discontinue their lease or initiate eviction proceedings.
Outsource Your Property Inspections
As you can see, there are many benefits to routine inspections, and this practice should be incorporated into any effective real estate management plan.
Depending on the size of your real estate portfolio, personally scheduling and following up on routine property inspections could be too much for you to handle. If you find yourself in this position, consider working with PMI Middle TN. We'll manage everything from repairs to legal compliance. Get in touch today to learn how we can help you!