The move-in process includes a lot of details and perfect timing. As the property owner, you want to make sure your home is ready for your new tenants. That will require you to have all the work and cleaning done before move-in day. The locks should be changed and the lawn should be mowed and you should present a property that is welcoming and move-in ready.
How to manage all the moving parts?
We recommend a move-in property condition checklist. Not only does this ensure that you’re ready for your tenant to take possession, it also allows you to accurately document the condition of your property before it’s occupied. You may need this at the end of the lease term, when you’re evaluating whether any damage was left behind.
Here’s why a move-in property condition checklist works for owners.
Identifying and Resolving Maintenance Issues
When you conduct an inspection of your property to make sure everything is functional and ready for the tenant, you’ll use your checklist to identify any maintenance and repair needs that are necessary. Take care of even the little things. Do your walls need a fresh coat of paint? Is there a window that isn’t locking properly? Do the kitchen drawers stick? Test every appliance, light switch, outlet, door, and window. Then, turn on the water in each faucet and look for leaks. Run the heat and the air conditioning.
If you discover any repairs that need to be made, get your vendors lined up before the move-in date. All work must be completed before your tenant takes possession of the home.
Documenting the Cleanliness of Your Rental Home
A clean home is important, not only because tenants deserve to move into a property that’s free of dirt and debris but also because you expect to get the home returned in clean condition at the end of the lease term.
You need to establish that the property was clean before your tenants moved in. Use your move-in condition checklist to confirm that floors, sinks, tubs, and toilets are free of dirt, debris, and dust.
Hire professional cleaners to take care of every detail before the tenant moves in, and make sure your checklist reflects that all standards of cleanliness have been met. Pictures will help. The cleaning invoice should also be attached to the condition checklist.
Provide Residents an Opportunity to View the Checklist
The most important reason to use a move-in checklist is that this will allow you to document the condition of your property. This is essential, because you’ll use the same checklist to compare how the property looks at the end of the lease term. This will impact whether the security deposit is returned in full, in part, or not at all.
Document the property condition with excellent pictures and even videos. Write up descriptions and make notes.
Most importantly – share the checklist with your tenants when they move in. You’ll want to provide your tenants with the opportunity to make any of their own observations on the condition of the property at move-in. Keep this in your records and refer to it when you’re inspecting the property at move-out.
A move-in checklist protects you and it protects your property. It also helps your residents because they won’t have to be held accountable for damage they didn’t create.
Need help putting together a move-in condition checklist? We can help. Contact us at Park Avenue Property Management. We manage rental properties in Lake Buena Vista, Orlando, Kissimmee, Celebration, Maitland, Altamonte Springs, West Palm Beach, Tampa Bay, and throughout central Florida.