When a tenant damages rental property, your response will depend on how you discovered the damage and at what point in the lease you find yourself. Today, we’re explaining what to do when a tenant damages a property.
Discovering Tenant Damage During Walk Throughs
Tenant damage can be discovered in several different ways. Doing periodic walk throughs might help you notice that something is damaged. When you are walking through the property during a lease, if you notice a problem, you’ll need to address it with the tenant. Document the damage by taking photos and notes, and then notify the tenants of the damage and how you expect them to take care of it. That might require the tenants to pay for the damage themselves, or they can reimburse you for the cost of any repairs.
Discovering Tenant Damage During Move Out Inspections
Another common way to find tenant damage is by seeing it when the tenants move out. At that point, the tenant’s security deposit is subject to deduction for those damages. Document why you are making the deduction by taking lots of photos and comparing those photos to the property condition before the tenants took possession. This will help you determine the extent of the damage and what action to take.
Protection Against Tenant Damage
If the tenant has renter’s insurance, the damage might be something that the insurance could cover. Advise your tenant to contact the insurance company and have an adjuster look at it. Keep in mind there is no way to prevent 100 percent of tenant damage. It’s always a possibility, and there is always something that will need to be repaired when a tenant moves out. Make sure you plan for this, and collect a security deposit that’s large enough to cover these costs.