Taking care of a rental property is a full time job. If you’re managing your own property and you’re not sure how you’re doing, take a look at these five signs you failed as a Minneapolis landlord. Don’t take that failure personally. If you can’t turn things around, turn to a professional who can avoid these mistakes and take outstanding care of your property.
Security Deposit Deadlines
As a landlord in Minnesota, you are legally required to return a tenant’s security deposit within 21 days of vacancy. Include any interest that was earned. If you are keeping some of the deposit, you need to provide a disposition that explains how much was kept and what it was used for.
You cannot be a good landlord without doing move in and move out inspection reports. This is your opportunity to document the condition of the property before a tenant gets the keys and after the tenant moves out. Your inspection report will allow you to compare the condition of the property, which will strengthen your case for withholding all or part of the security deposit to pay for damages. Check everything during these inspections, including the condition of the paint and the floors, whether the window locks work and how the inside of the appliances look. It’s a crucial part of property management.
You cannot forget to give tenants the legal disclosures to which they are entitled. This includes the lead based paint disclosure if your property was built before 1978. Any repair work or remodels that you do to the property that changes or affects more than six square feet inside or 20 square feet outside will also require disclosures and information.
Nothing will chase off a tenant faster than deferred maintenance. Handle their repair requests quickly. It’s tempting to do the work yourself or to put off the work until later, but that’s not fair to your tenants. It’s also not good for your property values. Hire licensed and professional contractors to take care of any repair work and don’t wait to get it done. That will only upset the tenants and put your property at risk for developing larger and more expensive problems.
The property has to be clean and attractive before a tenant moves in. The moving process is stressful on its own; you don’t want to add to that stress by giving tenants a home with a fridge that doesn’t work or a pipe that’s leaking in the bathroom or debris and dirt all over the floors. Inspect the property before tenants move in, and make sure everything is working and clean.
Don’t set yourself up for failure as a landlord. Be successful by working with a professional property manager who can save you money and protect your property. Contact Residential Property Management, Inc. if you have any questions.