A crucial step in our on-boarding process is to perform a ‘rent-ready’ inspection at your property to ensure it meets our standards and that it will show well and quickly attract a quality tenant. When we do our rent-ready inspection report, we detail any items needing attention so you can get the work done or we can help coordinate it for a fee of 10% of the total cost. The below guidelines are things we are looking for during that process. While all of them are strongly recommended, not all of them our mandatory to meet our minimum standards.
Getting a rental property in Rent-Ready Condition is crucial to:
- Attract a Quality Tenant
- Minimize Vacancy Costs, and
- Maximize the Rental Rate
Price and pictures cause people to want to view an available rental property. Curb appeal and cleanliness help them fall in love with it once they get there. Everything working well when they move in helps show them the property has been well cared for and that they should care for it just as well. Getting a property ‘rent-ready’ plays a big part in this process.
When we live somewhere, we can get used to all of its little idiosyncrasies. There may be quirks to your home that you are used to and don’t even notice, but would be bothersome to a tenant. A quality tenant does not want to be told “the pool light never worked” or “the windows never had screens, it’s just always been that way”. If there is something on the list below that is missing or that doesn’t work that you do not want to repair please email us about it so we can disclose it to prospective tenants before they apply to rent the home. This will help avoid tenants feeling surprised or upset when they find out about it after they move in.
Keys and Remotes:
- Key all exterior doors to the same key and provide 4 copies of the house key to us.
- Ensure a garage door opener is installed and provide 2 garage door remotes to us.
- At least 1 copy of any mailbox, community, and gate keys/fobs
- Order a professional landscape cleanup of the front, back and side yards:
- Trim all grass and shrubs.
- Remove weeds (both from the lawn and gravel areas of yards).
- Remove any grass from gravel areas (living or dead).
- Remove any/all personal items including pots, outdoor furniture, toys/tools, equipment, supplies, etc.
- Perform annual trimming/thinning of all trees.
- Check irrigation systems and make any needed repairs.
- Sweep any dirt from the walkways and patio.
Driveway and Garage Floor:
- Powerwash oil spots, stains,
- Repair large cracks, cracked drainage channels or other potential tripping hazards
- Order a professional inspection of the roof and make any necessary repairs
- Replace any missing, displaced or cracked tiles or shingles
- Replace bent or missing flashing
- Repair any mud caps that are cracked/missing
- Remove any debris present
- If the HVAC system has not been inspected in the past year, order 20 point inspection, preventative primary and secondary condensate drain line flush and evap coil inspection (if accessible) – this is recommended once a year.
- Repair any damage or wear marks in exterior stucco
- Check condition of exterior paint
- wipe fingers along paint, it should not rub off
- Powerwash excess dirt
- Repair damage and/or dry rot from fascia and soffits
- Check for corrosion and/or leaks on exterior water lines and valves and repair
- Remove and discard any unused Satellite antennas and/or cables. Repair damage to structure it was attached to
- Screens present on all windows that open and doors. Repair any rips or tears
- Replace any missing or blown light bulbs (front and back)
- Weekly pool service is in place
- Install a pool barrier or modify all backyard access doors so they are self-closing and locking with a high handle.
House Cleaning: Remove all items and order a professional deep clean of the property.
- Remove any and all personal items from a house except for extra light bulbs, paint, flooring and appliance manuals. All personal items, cleaning supplies, tools, spare parts, furniture and equipment should be removed.
- Perform a professional top-to-bottom cleaning of the home. Professional cleaners can get every area of the property clean–fan blades, ovens, baseboards, and places that many landlords would forget to clean themselves. This is important because tenants will be looking for dirt when they move in and the cleanliness of the property helps set high future expectations of how they will treat the home. If you choose to clean the property yourself use this checklist as a guide.
- Degrease and pressure wash the driveway and pressure wash exterior of the property as needed.
Carpet Cleaning: Have the carpets professionally cleaned. Tenants are asked to do this before they turn in their keys at the end of their lease so the carpets need to be in this condition when they move in.
Flooring: Repair or replace any stained or damaged carpets. If the carpet is more than 6 years old it may be due for replacement.
Painting: Remove all nails/screws and items from walls, patch all holes (small and big) and paint as needed.
- Full interior painting is recommended if it has been 5+ years or longer since the last full painting. Choose a color that will be appealing to the broadest possible audience: white, light beige, and light greys with white trim will work well for most properties. Remove any wallpaper that is more than 10 years old before painting.
- Touchup paint generally does not look good and is not recommended unless the walls have only a few blemishes and if you have the original paint and it is less than 2 years old. Touch up painting with new color matched paint is not recommended.
- Clean/Remove any overpainting from previous paint jobs and re-texture and paint any past drywall repairs that have mismatched or flat texture. If you have previously painted the interior of the house yourself we recommend hiring a professional to reprint the edges to get sharp/clean lines.
- Repair any drywall damage and paint. This includes settling cracks, moisture stains, drywall nails popping out and peeling drywall tape. Be sure texture matches.
General Repairs: Make sure the property is in good repair and everything works well
- Change the air filters.
- Replace batteries in smoke detectors as needed. Smoke detectors over 10 years old should be replaced.
- Replace any broken or non-working blinds. Blinds need to raise and lower as well as turn open.
- Replace burned out lightbulbs throughout interior and exterior.
- Repair water damaged boards under sinks as needed, check for corroding pipes and valves and repair as needed before they fail.
- If the water heater is more than 12 years old we recommend replacing it before it fails and possibly results in a costly water damage loss.
- Make sure all appliances are in good working order.
- If appliances such as refrigerators, washer/dryers, RO and water softeners are not to be warranted during a tenant’s occupancy our office will need to be notified immediately so that our marketing can be adjusted to reflect an ‘As-Is’ condition.
- Perform a one-time professional pest treatment.
- Ensure screens are present on all windows and arcadia doors. Repair or replace any ripped/torn screens.
- Make sure all doors open/close and latch easily and lock properly. Ensure the fire door (door from house into garage) is self-closing.
- Make sure all plumbing is working properly: sufficient water pressure, no dripping faucets/spouts, no leaking supply lines or supply valves, and all drains drain quickly. We recommend Replacing any plumbing fixtures that are more than 15 years old or that look worn/dated before they fail.
- Remove any discolored bathroom caulking and recaulk. Caulk any cracks at bathroom sinks, showers, flooring and at baseboards throughout house.
- Install new or replace any non-working door stoppers throughout the property.
- Make sure all windows easily open and close and lock.
- Check outlets and switches for proper operation. Replace damaged faceplates.
- Check for gaps in exterior doors. Install sweeps or weather stripping as needed.
- Replace filters for Refrigerator and RO systems if there isn’t a date of their last change. During occupancy, the tenant is responsible for replacing filters as long as they are informed as to when the filter needs to be changed.
- Ensure all cabinets/drawers throughout property open/close properly and are free from scratches/damage
Thermostat setting: If the property is being shown during the summer months keep the thermostat set no higher than 83 degrees. If marketing during the winter months keep the thermostat set no lower than 69 degrees. If a prospective tenant is walking through the property feeling uncomfortably hot in the summer they are less likely to move forward with an application.
Following these guidelines will help ensure your rental property has a higher chance of attracting a quality tenant in a short amount of time at a good rental rate. If you will be coordinating the property turn we ask that you give us 3 business days after you are done and before marketing begins to inspect the turn so we can ensure it meets our show-ready and rent-ready standards. We can help coordinate work for you if needed.