How Often Should a Landlord Inspect Rental Property in Richmond, VA?

How Often Should a Landlord Inspect Rental Property in Richmond, VA?

When investing in real estate, rental properties can be a great choice. If you manage them well, you can make a solid income.

One of the key aspects of managing properties involves inspecting them to make sure they're suitable for tenants. You can't do this at any time you want, however. It's important to find a balance that works for you and your tenants.

In this guide, we'll discuss how often you should perform rental property inspections in Richmond, VA.

Why Rental Property Inspections Are Important

Landlords have legal responsibilities to their tenants. You need to make sure any properties you're renting out are safe and fit for people to live in. You can determine this through inspections.

There can be various rental property maintenance issues that you may need to deal with, such as plumbing leaks, faulty electrical systems, and broken windows/doors. Keeping your property in a good state is vital for keeping tenants happy. Tenants are responsible for smaller maintenance work such as replacing lightbulbs and general cleaning.

Types of Inspections

Before tenants move in, you should carry out a moving-in inspection. This is a thorough check of the entire property to assess its current state. You can determine if any work is needed before the tenants' move-in date.

After they leave, you'll need to do a moving-out inspection. At this point, you can determine if the tenants have caused any damage while staying there. Depending on your assessment, you may need to take money out of their security deposit to pay for repairs.

The third type is routine rental property inspections. You should carry these out at regular intervals while your tenant is staying there. These will allow you to highlight any issues and deal with them as needed.

How Often Should You Carry Out Inspections?

Different states have different laws regarding rental property inspections. In Virginia, there are no specific rental property inspection laws that limit how often you can carry out an inspection. You must, however, provide the tenant with at least 24 hours of notice.

Ideally, you'll give them more than 24 hours. Most landlords follow a rental property inspection checklist and carry out regular inspections quarterly or annually. It's best to lay this out in your lease agreement so that tenants are aware.

The only exception in which you don't need to give any notice is in the case of an emergency. For example, if there's a burst pipe or a neighbor notices smoke coming out of the property.

It's also important to understand that tenants have a legal right to quiet enjoyment of a property. As such, you shouldn't violate their privacy without good reason.

If you keep entering the property, they're not going to appreciate it. This will make them less likely to want to renew their lease when it runs out, which isn't ideal.

Professional Rental Property Inspections

Rental property inspections are essential for keeping your properties in a good state. With that in mind, you don't want to do them too often. It's ideal to detail in your lease how often your inspections will be.

Inspections are best done by a professional. PMI Richmond has been providing inspections and other real estate services in Richmond, VA, for over 20 years. Take a look at our property management page to find out more.