A property inspection may some of the best insurance a property owner can have against an tenant tearing up their Oklahoma City rental property.
For example, I have a 4-bedroom house I have leased out to a family with a section 8 voucher. We had a work order performed at the property to fix a heating problem. After completing the work order, the technician conducted a maintenance inspection.
The maintenance inspection indicated that the tenant was putting big holes in the sheetrock. As a result, we requested section 8 to inspect the property, which is the first step in getting that tenant out of the property.
The Happy Inspector App
Happy Inspector is an App that is loaded onto the phones of my field technicians and leasing crew. It is designed specifically to provide a concise inspection report. It can include photos and text entered in the field by the technician.
The user can quickly move through a property, and provide a detailed assessment. The beauty of the app is that it integrates all the information together instead of the technician having to make a detailed written list that will later have to be written up along with a bunch of photos that will have to be moved around. The app makes these operations almost automatic.
The app allows the technician to quickly evaluate different areas of the rental unit, such as the entry way, kitchen, bathroom, bedrooms, utility room, etc. The technician rates walls, ceilings, floors, doors, and windows within these areas as good, poor, clean, dirty, damaged, or marked. Some areas like kitchen and bathrooms have other features such as sinks, toilets, showers, and appliances which also get evaluated.
And, if appropriate, the technician can leave a text comment or take a number of photos.
The Different Types of Inspections
I’ll go over the three different types of inspections below. In a related article, I talk about when and why to do property inspections.
#1. Move-Out Inspection
A move out inspection happens when a tenant moves out of a property. The purpose of the move out inspection is to determine how much a tenant should be charged out of their security deposit for damages. And, what needs to be done for the make ready to get the property ready to rent.
We do the move-out inspection using the Happy Inspector app.
#2. Maintenance Inspection
A maintenance inspection is an inspection that we perform while the tenant is still living in the property. The purpose of the maintenance inspection is to assess the condition of the property, and to determine if any repairs should be performed. For example, if there is an unreported leak under a sink that could cause further damage to the cabinets of not addressed.
We recommend that a maintenance inspection be performed about 6 months after the tenant moves into the property. After that, a maintenance inspection should be performed on approximately a 12-month basis.
We use the Happy Inspector App to perform the maintenance inspection.
We generally do maintenance inspections at the end of a maintenance work order that was scheduled at the property anyway. By doing so, we can save the owner of the property money because we are not having the technician make a special trip to the property.
If there has not been a work order request and it’s time for a maintenance inspection, we will schedule the maintenance inspection as a stand-alone item.
#3. The Move In Inspection
The Move-In inspection is done prior to when a tenant move in. The purpose is to create a record of the initial conditions of the property when the tenant moves in.
Alternatively, if we are just starting management on a property, it’s where we determine what needs to be done to make the property ready to rent. And, verify that all the make ready repairs are completed.
Items the Inspections Include
- Evaluation of cosmetics, such as paint, trim, doors, flooring, etc. That includes walls, ceilings, etc.
- A check to verify that all doors and windows are in working order.
- Evaluation of basic electrical and plumbing to verify those are in working order. For example, that all sinks work and drain properly. That all lights work. Check to see if plumbing is leaking or toilets are running.
- Quick evaluation of appliance.
What the Inspections DO NOT Include
- Here is a list of what these inspections do not include:
- An evaluation of the heating and cooling system,
- A detailed evaluation of the electrical and plumbing systems.
To summarize, there are three different types of inspections, the move-out, and move-in, and the maintenance inspection.