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Tenant turnover can be one of the most stressful situations for a real estate investor because it spells temporary doom for their cash flow. However, it is also an opportunity for them to take a step back and conduct many important tasks they may have wanted to complete while the previous tenant was there.
While it can be tempting to rush and try to get a new tenant into a property as quickly as possible, you do not want to do this. If you rent out a property straight away after a tenant moves out, you cannot be certain that the unit is 100 per cent ready to be inhabited again. Instead, take your time with tenant turnover.
So, in order to help you stay prepared and tackle tenant turnover like a professional, here are five things you should to do prepare your rental properties for new tenants.
Before we dive in, we understand that tenant turnover can be stressful on your finances. However, there are tools you can prepare now to help protect your mortgage while you find new renters during the tenant turnover period later. To learn more about them, click the link below to book a free strategy call today.
Ask The Previous Tenant to Clean on Their Way Out
The first step you should take whenever you receive notice that a tenant will be moving out of one of your properties is to ask them if they could clean the unit on their way out to make tenant turnover easier.
No one wants to deal with another person’s mess and while the tenant may not do a perfect job, it is going to be much more manageable for you to start preparing the unit for the next tenant if they start the cleaning process for you. Even if they cannot deep clean every surface in the property, a quick pass over the unit can cut down on the cleaning time for a property by a significant amount. This may also save you money later in the process.
Make Sure All Tenant Belongings Are Out of the Unit
Once the tenant has moved out, take a moment to go through the unit and double check that they have not left any of their possessions behind. If they have left anything in the unit, reach out to them and let them know what you have found and give them the opportunity to come and reclaim it before the tenant turnover period is over.
If the tenant does not make plans to reclaim their property or do not come within an agreed upon period, you are free to keep, sell or dispose of the items as you see fit.
Whatever you do, try not to leave them in the property, no one likes to move into a home only to find that someone else’s stuff is all over the place.
Discover How To Deal With Difficult Tenants With This Step By Step Guide
Conduct Any Needed Maintenance or Wanted Renovations
Now that the property is vacant and clear of any tenant belongings, it is time for you to conduct any needed maintenance or renovations that you have wanted to conduct but could not complete while the property was inhabited.
This is easily the best part of tenant turnover because you have the freedom to do what you want with the unit for the first time since it was rented.
This can include repainting the walls if the tenant was a smoker, replacing old cabinets, double checking for leaks and water damage and more. This way you know the property is in prime condition for your next tenant and you will not need to worry about them calling you immediately after moving with to complain about problems with the unit.
You can also use this as a chance to make improvements that could allow you to ask for higher rents from the property and generate a greater cash flow from the rental.
Have the Unit Professionally Cleaned
Typically, it does not matter if a property looks clean, it usually is not as clean as you expect. Over the course of a tenancy, hidden dirt and grime can work its way into all sorts of surfaces that can contribute to a musty scent or feeling in a property. By hiring a professional cleaner to come in and clean up the unit, you will find that the place will automatically feel more inviting and comfortable once it is fully cleaned.
Obviously, there is a cost associated with doing this, but if you asked your previous tenants to clean up after themselves when they moved out, the cleaner will have a much easier time doing their job and will be capable of completing their tasks much faster. This means you may be able to save money on the hourly rates of whichever cleaners you decide to hire. The cleaners will also appreciate the fact the unit is already partially cleaned, and it can make it easier to build a working relationship with them for your future investments.
Take Updated Photos of the Property
Finally, what you need to do during tenant turnover is to take photos of the fully updated and cleaned property. Even if you do not need them immediately to market the property and you already have a tenant lined up, these can be incredibly helpful for your long-term property maintenance planning.
Make sure the photos you take not only highlight the best angles of the property, but also capture the condition of some of the property’s key features. This way if they become damaged later, you have evidence of how they looked to protect yourself in the event an irresponsible tenant tries to claim the property came that way.
Bonus: Refinancing to Fund Tenant Turnover Renovations
If you are planning to renovate a property during tenant turnover, you may want to consider refinancing the property to draw on the equity you have already built. With these funds you can let the property pay for itself instead of paying out of pocket for the improvements you conduct. This method can also increase your overall budget for renovations and maintenance so that you can get the best final result available.
If you would like more information about how you can draw on the equity you have built in your investment properties to improve your investments or even buy new properties, give us a call at LendCity. Our number is 519-960-0370 or you can visit us at LendCity.ca Alternatively, click the link below for a free strategy call today.