Being a landlord can be quite a profitable business venture. However, if you don’t protect yourself from liability then you’ll find yourself in quite the pickle. Usually, landlords get held up in the responsibilities of keeping in line with standards, health and safety checks, etc. This can create quite the rift between you and your tenant as well, and a negative relationship here can chip away at your patience. So to save yourself the financial and emotional hassle, make sure to double check that all these issues are fixed before you hand the apartment over to your tenant.
Building codes contain technical standards that ensure the building is safe and stable for occupation. Needless to say, if you don’t comply with these, you’re in for some pretty hefty legal action. Be it your ignorance or negligence, this mistake will impact your business as a commercial landlord. Keep in mind that building codes have sections that are regularly being updated so make sure to have regular inspections to compensate for that.
The lease agreement
When negotiating a lease agreement, keep in mind that there is no singular template for landlords to use. The lease is subject to change depending on your situation so, especially if this is your first time venturing into the business of a landlord, it’s best that you hire some third party help in creating the lease and outlining the terms. Things to keep in mind when considering the lease agreement are- what falls under the landlord’s accountability? What repairs will the tenant be accountable for? What alterations can be made?
This entails the physical issues that may be haunting your complex. For example, is there water damage? Anything wrong with the roofing and paneling? What about the electrical units? Bottom-line is that you have to protect your investment and put a little effort into it so that you have long term coverage. You also have responsibilities as a landlord, according to the lease agreement, that details the need for you to make certain repairs- and to do so promptly. For example, common responsibilities for commercial landlords include removal of hazardous materials, seeing to communal areas, security problems, and piping. Check out combinedbuilding.com.au for professional help in dealing with these matters.
General property insurance will cover any damages to the building, or even to any equipment inside in case of commercial leasing. However, general coverage might not protect you from cases such as the tenant sustaining an injury due to bad lighting, for example or any other default in the property. Seek a diverse insurance plan that will cover you in different types of situations.
Make sure to have the property cleaned before handing it over- especially in cases of an apartment turnover (when there was a tenant living in it previously). Areas like the fridge, stove, and bathroom will need more attention in this instance.
These are the most important issues landlords need to address when it comes to handing over an apartment or property. Make sure to go over this list every time you have a new tenant until it becomes as familiar as the back of your hand!