So you’ve got a Richmond rental property, and there’s already a renter calling the place home—but they don't intend to renew. You also don’t want long vacancy times between renters because that can cost you some income.
Yes, you own the property, and technically, your renter is bound by specific terms in the lease agreement. However, as any Richmond property management company would tell you, it’s not only common courtesy to give them some privacy; it’s a legal obligation as well. You can’t just barge in whenever you feel like it—so what do you do when it's time to turn your Richmond rental property?
As a property investor, you’re free to enter the unit under certain conditions. Obviously, an emergency would warrant you to get in there as quickly as possible; anyone can understand that. You’re not going to sit back and watch your unit go up in flames due to a faulty fridge coil or stay exposed to the elements with a hole in the roof.
Even the law supports you if you need to protect your property with routine maintenance and repairs—but property showings don't fall into this category. So, what happens if you want to have a showing before your current resident moves on? Surely there’s a way to secure your next renter without offending the current renter? Read on to learn more about occupied-property showings from a Richmond property management company.
Please note: This article is not a substitute for legal advice; it is merely for informational purposes. When in doubt, partner up with a capable attorney or property manager in Richmond.
Negotiate and Wait
Some renters might not be too excited about letting you show other people around the place they still call home—especially in current pandemic conditions. In this case, you’ll need to negotiate.
- Provide an incentive like reduced rent for their last month or redemption for professional cleaning services to encourage cooperation.
- The better the incentive, the more frequently they’re likely to allow for multiple showings—even within the same week. However, you'll want to maximize your options as an investor by showing properties to qualified renters.
You don’t want to torture your renter by bringing in someone new every other day! Plus, that can be a health and safety hazard these days.
What You Need to Know About Giving Notice
- Give your renter a day or two of notice before you facilitate a viewing.
- If the renter is untidy and the unit is a mess, you might want to give them more time to get it all cleaned up.
- Nobody wants to be shown an apartment occupied by a hoarder, so you shouldn’t put too much pressure on them if a lot of work needs to be done.
Most states require property investors to provide renters with up to two days’ notice, but you can add a few more if they need more time. The law can be vague sometimes; it might even call for you to give a notice that is 'deemed reasonable.' Rather than risking court time, it's better to work with your renters, your attorney, and your Richmond property management company to determine what 'reasonable' might entail.
Keep Providing Excellent Service in the Meantime
Yes, your renter is on the way out, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t leave in peace. This is a repeat customer who has enough experience to go on and tell people what great customer service you offered them while they rented your property. This means that while they continue to call your Richmond rental property home, you need to provide the same great service to them that you would as if they were about to renew.
An advantage of this as the investor is that you can continue to keep an eye on the condition of your property as well and potentially have advanced notice on any necessary repairs. This will speed up the rate you're able to perform your property turn post-move-out day and give you a readily available checklist of potential repair points to get started on immediately.
Ultimately, Be Considerate to Your Former Renters
Sure, you can showcase your Richmond rental property with proper (and reasonable) notice while a renter is living there, but do follow the law and remember to be considerate.
If all of this sounds like a headache, consider outsourcing this part of your investment journey to an experienced property manager! The great thing about hiring a Richmond property management company is that they’ll work hard to ensure that your property is always occupied while you focus on other aspects of your life.
If you prefer to DIY, a great place to get started is with your free copy of our Make-Ready Checklist! It's designed to walk you through areas in your rental home that may need cleaning and inspections when conducting your property turns.