Very few of us expected the pandemic to continue impacting our lives well after the one-year mark. While things are looking better with vaccines and economies re-opening, there are still a lot we don’t know about the virus and how dangerous it may continue to be.
RentSimpli is a full-service San Diego property management company specializing in single family homes, townhouses, condos, mobile homes, small commercial buildings and small apartments. We’ve helped our owners and our tenants navigate these uncertain circumstances over the last year, and today we want to share a simple and effective safety checklist for landlords and property managers that we’ve found to be particularly helpful.
The “V” in HVAC is More Important than Ever
When we think about our HVAC systems in rental properties, we’re typically focused on heating and cooling.
Not anymore. Ventilation is now just as important – if not more important.
Check the ventilation in your rental properties. You want to be sure air is freely moving throughout the home. This is a good opportunity to check for leaks, mold, and other potential health hazards. Tenants don’t want to be at risk for getting sick, and good ventilation can make a huge difference in protecting their health. Air filters and vents should be cleaned and inspected routinely. Open up the windows during turnover periods to let fresh air flow through the property.
Contact-Free Showings and Leasing
At RentSimpli, we have always invested in property management technology, so we were more than prepared for having to manage our work remotely. Tenants and owners now prefer to conduct self-showings where they don’t have to worry about running into a crowd of people they way they might at an open house. If you’re not already collecting rent electronically, you should be.
Tours and showings can even be virtual. We’ve found that prospective tenants are spending more time exploring properties online before they rent. All lease documents and paperwork should be shared and signed electronically, reducing the risk of sharing germs and potential viruses. A contact-free rental experience is efficient and allows for social distancing. It also provides a lot of peace of mind to tenants, owners, and vendors.
Multi-Family San Diego Rentals
Rental properties with shared spaces have their own unique challenges during this pandemic.
If you’re renting out a multi-family property, you’ll have to be especially vigilant about cleaning and disinfecting communal areas such as mailboxes, laundry rooms, lobbies, pools, and fitness centers. Some properties have closed them completely. If you want to keep them open or open them back up, make sure you communicate social distancing requirements to tenants. Leave gloves and disinfecting wipes throughout the property so they can be available when needed.
Pandemic Property Inspections
It’s not a good idea to avoid or delay property inspections, but you have to make sure you’re doing them safely while respecting your tenant’s concerns about having you in the property if you’re doing a walk-through while it’s occupied. Your safety checklist during these inspections should include:
- Asking your tenants not to be present when you inspect, or enforcing social distance guidelines and mask wearing while you’re in the property.
- Wear gloves when you’re in the home and disinfect anything that you touch.
- Ask tenants to turn on all the lights before you arrive so you won’t have to touch the lights.
- Work quickly. Don’t stay longer than you have to. Look for deferred or unreported maintenance, take some photos to document condition, and then leave.
- Limit the number of people you bring with you to inspect the property.
Make sure your tenants know well in advance that you’ll be conducting your maintenance walk-through or inspection. Provide your safety checklist so they’ll know what to expect.
If you would like to discuss how we have safely and effective managed San Diego rental homes throughout the pandemic, please contact us at RentSimpli. We’d be happy to tell you more.
RentSimpli is a full-service property management company serving landlords, investors and property owners in San Diego & Riverside Counties, including La Mesa, El Cajon, Chula Vista, Santee, Rancho Bernardo, Escondido, Fallbrook, Temecula, and Murrieta.