If you're new to the rental property game, there may be some aspects of property maintenance you are unaware of. While you can work on your own property whenever you like, and to whatever extent you like, when it comes to a rental that someone is living in, there are a few things to consider.
A property inspection is the best way to find out about maintenance issues. Not only will you get a chance to see the property firsthand, but the tenant can describe any problems which may not be apparent. Take a pen and paper with you to note down items for repair, or things to keep an eye on, as a big list can crop up in a small amount of time and be hard to remember.
In South Australia, you are required to give a tenant between seven and 14 days notice of an upcoming inspection, and this must be provided in writing. While you may have a good relationship with your tenants, it is always preferable to have all communication writing, as any potential dispute is much easier to solve if there are written records of transactions and communication.
Don't be timid.
If you notice something starting to slide in your tenants' maintenance of your property, be sure to bring it up. They may not realise that they are not keeping the property to the required standard. It is also important to deal with these issues as they arise, as you can only perform a property inspection a maximum of once every four weeks, and this could give time for the problem to get worse.
After any inspection, it is a good idea to write a summary of improvements that need to be made buy the tenant and/or yourself, and to keep one on file and give the other to the tenant. That way everyone is on the same page.
Inspecting and maintaining a rental property can be a full time job – so you may want to consider a property manager for your Adelaide rental investment.