Resettling into a new Omaha rental house can be very pleasant. Not to mention that it could also be the opportune time to protect your security deposit: a pre-move-in walkthrough inspection. While some landlords will provide you with a list of things to check around your rental home before you move in, others may not. Whether or not it’s required, a walkthrough inspection is something you should do on your own. It’s best to keep a few tips and tricks in mind before you go through with your pre-move-in walkthrough.
An in-person walkthrough allows you to see the details in person. A helpful landlord may say that they have inspected the property for you, but you still need to check everything yourself. While plenty of landlords aren’t voluntarily trying to trick you, you still may uncover maintenance or other issues that got left out of the report. If you don’t check each part of your rental property carefully, you could wind up paying for repairing something that was broken before you moved in.
Use a Checklist
Making the most of your pre-move-in walkthrough means inspecting each part of your rental home carefully. Be meticulous with the details by using a checklist. Not all landlords will give you a checklist, though. However, there are a lot of checklists and guidesavailable online for download. So that your walkthrough is focused, use a checklist so that you don’t miss anything. After moving out, you can also use the checklist for comparison.
A checklist is an important first step in documenting your walkthrough. However, making the most of your pre-move-in inspection means going a little bit beyond simply checking off items. To fully protect your security deposit from undeserved repair charges, you need to carefully and thoroughly document each aspect of the property’s condition before you move in. Don’t hesitate to write down lots of notes using your checklist or another piece of paper. Write them down — condition issues, locations, etc.; no detail is too small.
Most landlords won’t try to charge you to replace an entire kitchen floor for one damaged spot in the linoleum, but some might. One great idea is to take pictures as you do your walkthrough. Take a variety of shots — close-up, wide, etc. Afterward, place the pictures somewhere safe.
Report Maintenance Issues
Once you’ve completed your walkthrough and documentation, be sure to report any maintenance issues you discovered right away. Broken toilet seats or blinds, leaky faucets, and non-functioning light switches or outlets — relatively small details, but details you need to tell your landlord. As much as possible, put your reported issues in writing before you send it to your landlord as proof. Doing this will protect your security deposit once you leave, and it will also protect you from unjust accusations.
Making the most of your pre-move-in walkthrough may take some work. But it’s worth it. If you want the full amount of your security deposit to be returned should anything happen, thoroughly documenting your rental home’s pre-move-in condition guarantees that.
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