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How to prepare for a new tenant

By Andrew Bell

Cleaning up the outside of your rental property is best done between tenants.

Managing an investment property can feel cumbersome at times, particularly when one tenant is departing and another is moving in. It's easy to find yourself grumbling about your burgeoning to-do list, particularly when an old tenant is departing unexpectedly. But paying a little extra attention to your rental property at this crucial transition time will result in a more positive relationship with your new renter, help you catch maintenance issues before they become problematic for your property and thus protect your investment.

Shift quickly to transitioning
As soon as a tenant lets you know they will leave your rental property, schedule a walk-through. This will allow you to identify issues that the existing tenant needs to fix per your contract. These could range from repairing cosmetic damage to fully repainting walls. The walk-through is also a good opportunity to discover broken appliances that will require replacement and perhaps even identify more serious structural issues that should be addressed before a new renter moves in.

Book in your helpers
Once you've completed the walk-through, it's time to tackle those issues you identified: You'll need to schedule repairs plus book in necessary time with tradies like plumbers, painters and carpenters as needed. Among the advantages of addressing necessary repairs early — even while your existing tenant is still in the unit — is that you can minimise the amount of time your unit is vacant. Limiting the time between tenants will only boost your bottom line.

Look outdoors
You need to deal with the outdoors of your property, particularly if this wasn't your tenant's contractual responsibility. It's likely that outdoor maintenance has been your responsibility as a landlord. Now that the property is going to turn over, you'll need to pay attention to washing outdoor windows, replacing torn screens, tidying the garden or lawn and scheduling any necessary pest control.

Don't forget to make sure any gutters and weatherboards get cleaned, too, alongside fireplaces or chimneys. You know — everyone's favourite tasks.

Address the inside
As soon as your tenant leaves, it's time to replace the locks and change any alarm codes. Not that you didn't trust your departing tenant, but it's impossible to know who aside from the tenant had extra keys or knew the codes.

Inside the home, it's key to ensure proper functioning and cleanliness of the HVAC system and to replace any filters. Now is also a good time to make sure all fire detectors and all telecommunications connections are working well.

Also make sure all burned out lightbulbs are replaced, and that all furnishing or fixtures are working well and ready for a new tenant.

In addition to a professional cleaning, handling all repairs and ease-of-use issues in the home will allow your new renter to begin their tenancy on the best foot.

Reach out for help
The time in between tenants is also a good moment to touch base with the agents and property managers at Ray White Surfers Paradise. All of our colleagues will do everything in our power to set you up for success and a positive relationship with your new tenant. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help you maximise your investment.

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