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Interim inspections – when more is more

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Let’s face it: traditional rental inspections are nobody’s favourite activity. Necessary? Sure. Fun or profitable? Not so much.

Small wonder most rental portfolio managers limit their inspection workload to the legislated minimum of incoming and outgoing inspections. Only one in three of our recent survey respondents reported conducting interim or midterm inspections as well.

That’s even less surprising when you take into account the fact that only 25% of property managers charge for inspections, interim or otherwise. Those that do, however, are reaping some very real rewards, not just in terms of cashflow but also the level of service – and value – they’re able to deliver to their rental investors.

Let’s take a peek at what that value looks like.

Benefits of interim inspections

Urgent maintenance (protecting property value)

The first – and possibly most critical – benefit is the ability to identify and action urgent maintenance issues. Tenants have an unfortunate habit of only drawing attention property issues when they start directly affecting living conditions. Having an opportunity to identify blocked gutters before they flood the roof space and start leaking water out the light fittings (for example) can be a gamechanger in terms of minimising property damage and repair costs.

Proactive planning (minimising risk, enhancing property value, protecting yield)

Interim inspections aren’t just about spotting and nipping problems in the bud, either. They also provide an invaluable opportunity to identify, plan and budget for proactive property maintenance and improvements. This can dramatically reduce the likelihood of future (costly and unexpected) maintenance emergencies, while simultaneously protecting and enhancing the property’s value and desirability – a great way to encourage tenant loyalty and lock in those annual rental escalations.

Tenant check-in (minimising risk, protecting yield)

Speaking of tenants, interim inspections are also a great time for rental managers to touch base with tenants and double-check that they’re living up to their end of the lease agreement. Any undesirable behaviour or shortfall in responsibilities can be appropriately addressed and documented, providing a valuable trail of evidence to support any disputes down the line.

Likewise, interim inspections offer a great opportunity to check in with tenants on their own satisfaction levels. Addressing small frustrations quickly can have a powerful effect on tenant loyalty and provide a strategic opening for conversations around future lease renewal or cancellation plans.

Investment updates (highlighting performance and unlocking additional opportunity)

Interim inspections also offer a valuable opportunity to update investors on their property’s performance (yield and capital growth) in comparison to local market conditions. What better way to remind your clients that your hard work is delivering actual, tangible dividends than to spell it out in black and white in a mid-term investment report?

These reports can also be used as a jumping-off point to discuss the potential for an investor to expand their portfolio by leveraging an existing rental property to finance the purchase of another. Providing this kind of insight and actionable advice can be a real eye-opener for investors, demonstrating your true value as a property asset manager.

Handling the inspection workload

Leveraged to their fullest, the benefits above can be pivotal in helping rental managers improve their investors’ yield while decreasing risk and unlocking growth opportunities. That’s a massive competitive advantage for any asset manager – and one investors have proven more than willing to pay for. (Hello, additional income stream!)

Unfortunately, none of that means anything if your rental managers have no capacity to handle the inspection workload.

The truth is, without the right tools and technology, even the most basic inspection is a time-consuming and fiddly process – often creating more headaches than actual, tangible benefits. That’s where tools like RedRabbit powered by WeconnectU come in.

RedRabbit uses cutting edge technology to streamline inspection workflows and automate manual processes for more efficient, more effective, and more insightful inspections across the board. Its seamless integration with our Rental Asset Management solution makes for effortless data flow between inspections, maintenance tickets, accounts and other processes. Even reporting is automated to get insights in front of investors faster and more effectively.

The result is a near-effortless workflow that not only solves all the traditional rental inspection pain points, but adds visible value to both rental manager and client alike.

Ready to turn your inspection “OWs” into inspection “WOWs”? Visit weconnectu.co.za to learn more about RedRabbit’s ability to boost your rental management business performance and keep your investors coming back for more.

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