When I was a young Century 21 broker back in the 1970s, we had a group that came out to Century 21 to talk to young brokers. One of the speakers was a psychologist and one was a retired marine office. The psychologist would tell us that we get what we expect. We were told that if we set our expectations high enough, we would achieve them. The marine was a little bit different. He said you get what you inspect, meaning you get whatever it is you are looking at. I always took that to heart, maybe because I am an ex-marine too. It still makes sense to me.

What I am suggesting is that you make sure you have an inspection routine in place for your property. You have to remember that when you move a tenant into your house, you are putting your asset, which may be worth half a million or even a million dollars, into the hands of a third party. You need to protect that asset.

Many tenants will tell you that they would prefer for you not to do routine inspections, but it is not improper for you to insist on it. Most people think that two inspections per year are enough, as long as they occur on a routine basis. If you find a tenant to be resistant to the idea, you have even more of a reason to inspect the property.

Earlier in the week, a potential client called me up to talk about property management services. He had been managing his own property for a few years and the first thing he asked me was whether I knew anyone at the San Jose police department. I thought this was a strange question to be asking a property manager. Evidently, the fire department had called him about his property. The tenant living there had told this owner that his mother was living in the property and she didn’t speak English and got very nervous if people showed up at the house. So, the owner had not kept up with inspections. It turns out the tenant had put a grow house on the property in order to grow marijuana. He was completely taken aback. This is the type of situation you want to avoid. Don’t be worried about telling your tenants you are going to inspect the property, and make sure you get there at least twice a year.

If you have any questions about inspections or property management, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Aborn Properties. We look forward to helping you out.