Whether you are the landlord or the tenant, an inspection checklist is important as it documents the condition of the rental on move in day. This kind of checklist protects a tenant from damage that existed before moving in and allows landlords to know what must be repaired.
We highly recommend that the tenant and landlord inspect the rental premises together. Having a signed checklist prevents any discrepancy once the rental contract is up. If there is pre-existing damage, take photographs. If the landlord agrees to make repairs before you move in, get it in writing.
Top things to look for in rental inspection:
- Floors: Note the condition of hardwood floors and tiled floors. Note any nicks or chips. Lok for stains or discoloration in carpets.
- Walls, Ceilings and Trim: Look for (and note) and dents, holes, or cracks in paint. Is wallpaper peeling? Are the stains on window wills?
- Electrical Outlets and Lights: Make sure everything is working
- Bathrooms and Kitchen: Make sure faucets work, that pressure is good, that water runs clear, check for chips in porcelain and make sure that all appliances are in working order.
- Doors and Windows: Make sure that doors and window lock property and are sealed (we live in a hot part of the world and do not want air conditioning to escape)
- Patio, Balconies, and Decks: Check for chipped stone, problems with sliding doors, paint condition, etc.
- Smoke Detectors : Check to make sure they are in working order.
- Air Conditioning Units (and maybe heater): Are filters clean, is Freon tapped up, is there any smell of must or mold? Is the unit cooling the house?
- Pipes and Drains: Is water flowing out of taps and down the drain? Does the dishwasher, disposal washing machines all function and drain properly? Do the toilet flush properly?
- Any Signs of Infestation: Look around for cracks and any space that might allow for bugs or rodents to come in. If you see any insects or rodents insist the property is fumigated first.
If you go through this checklist before moving in you can really save some money when moving out as there is a document (and photos) that show the state of the property prior to moving in.