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Today, we are going to talk about your access rights to your rental unit. As a landlord, you might be wondering whether you can call your tenant to inform him/her that you will be dropping by for an inspection.
Exercise caution with this area because this is where tenants may accuse you of invasion of privacy. You wouldn't want to give your tenants any reason to bring up this matter to court as an additional complaint against you in case you had a dispute over a different matter.
Understand that your tenants have the right to privacy - to have a quiet enjoyment of their home.
1. In what circumstances can you access your property and what is the correct way to do it?
2. When are you allowed to enter the premises in which a 24-hour notice is not practical?
3. In cases when a repair person will enter the unit the following day, what is the most important reminder you should give to your tenant in your written notice or verbal voicemail message to prevent accusations?
4. When should you do a pre-moveout inspection?
Let's talk about the first of these 4 questions. In what circumstances can you access your property and what is the correct way to do it?
You can do periodic inspections. It would be reasonable for you to let the tenant know that you are going to drop by and check the unit on a quarterly basis, every 6 months, etc. to check if there are any repairs needed and if the tenant wants to inform you about anything that requires attention. You don't have to make periodic inspections unless you feel that this is necessary.
Give a 24-hour notice
You will have to inform your tenants ahead of time (at least 24 hours notice) about you carrying out an inspection or making a repair of the unit. The inspection or repair should be carried out at reasonable times of the day. Also, you have to let the tenant know in the notice who will be entering the unit and for what reason.
If there is a court order that allows you access to the unit (such as after an eviction process ends).
Showing the property to prospective tenants or buyers
If you are going to show the unit at the end of the lease term to prospective tenants or buyers, it would be reasonable to do it every other day or on a weekend.
However, if you show the unit to others (if you plan on selling your property) within the tenant's entire lease period, this would be unreasonable to the tenant. Make sure to state in the lease form that you are selling your rental property and that you are going to conduct property showings so that the tenant knows before he/she signs the lease.
For the rest of this lesson, existing Landlord Prep students should log-in to the module entitled During the Tenancy - Landlord's Entry/Access to Rental.
Not a member yet? Join the Landlord Prep: Video E-Course and How-To Tutorials so you can access this section and get the complete DIY landlording course. This will help you stay confident and knowledgeable as a landlord.