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Home inspection

Written by SJA Property Management

SJA offers premier Seattle property management services and serves as the local real estate industry’s most experienced resource for rental property owners.

Property inspections can be nerve wracking, especially with new laws that require you to pass in order to rent to tenants.

If you’re facing an inspection, then you have to pass it and the best way to ensure that you do is to prepare on your own before the official inspection. That means doing an inspection, using a checklist, and making sure that everything is up to code. The following include a few tips from Bellevue property management companies for anyone who wants to do their own.  

Consider Hiring a Professional 

You are most likely familiar with your property, and might even be reluctant to replace or mark down something expensive if it’s not that bad. A professional inspection company will tell you what’s wrong, and in the bluntest possible terms, so that you can fix it before the inspectors that matter come along. Most importantly, they will notice the same items as the city inspector.  

Check Your Moving In Checklist 

You also want to compare the condition of items like the floor, windows, walls, hallways, air conditioning, HVAC, and other items to your moving in checklist. If the tenant has caused damage since they moved in, now is a good time to ask them to fix it, or to fix it out of their initial deposit.  

Check Fire Safety 

You can easily do a fire safety inspection of your entire building, or schedule one with the local fire department, but you typically only get one a year. Make sure that you have the appropriate number of C02 monitors, that all of your stairways and exists are easily accessible, and that you have a fire extinguisher on every floor. You can also get a permit for a sprinkler, new fire alarm systems, or another type of fire suppression system if you feel that yours is out of date.  

Test Alarms

Test all alarms including smoke alarms, fire extinguishers, and Co2 monitors in the presence of your tenants, update the batteries of necessary, and make sure that they remember how to operate the devices. If alarms are over 10 years old, consider replacing them.  

Check Heating and Cooling

Make sure that heating, cooling, and hot water are all in working order. Consider having the HVAC system inspected if it has been more than 6 months.  

Check Doors and Windows

Check the age of the doors and windows, and double check to ensure that they latch properly and that they seal properly. If desired, you can have a door or window company inspect these to ensure that they are sealing properly, and have them re-sealed if necessary.  

Check the Premises

Finally, it is important to inspect the entire premises to do any repairs and maintenance as necessary, to ensure that there are no dangerous obstacles or objects (such as broken boards, weak flooring, rusty nails, etc.).  

Preparing for an inspection is the easiest way to ensure that you pass the first time, but if you don’t, you will get the chance to make the repairs and changes as suggested and call for a second inspection. This is a lot more hassle then passing it the first time, but you can do it. If you don’t have the time to handle the regular maintenance of your units, you may also want to consider hiring a professional Bellevue property management company to do so for you.  

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