Spring break is fast approaching and everyone is frantic looking for their last minute condo reservations. While it is a great thing to have your rental property occupied and making money, it’s even better knowing your place and your belongings are properly protected.
There’s a few ways to physically protect your rental property.
- Invest in good lock. This seems pretty standard but it is the simplest way to keep your property safe. The best option would be a keyless entry lock. This is a lock with a keypad attached to the door and it would allow you to change the code after each guest. It’s a sure way to minimize the risk of a previous guest being able to reenter your home. Of course, there are other options such as a lock box. This would work the same way in that each guest would receive a new code to unlock the box and access the keys to the house. Many people trust this method, but the best way would be to go keyless. It’s a simple upgrade and most condominium complexes will allow the use of a keyless entry lock.
- Spray for pests. This may not seem like it directly protects your belongings but keeping bugs out of the home keeps them out of your things like furniture, cabinets, and even the air vents. With spring right around the corner all the insects of the world are going to come out of their hiding places and into your home. No, a bug isn’t going to destroy your blankets but who wants bugs in their blankets if it can be easily prevented? Do yourself a favor and protect your property from those pesky little insects.
- Have the carpets professionally cleaned. While you may not need to do this after every guest it’s good to have the carpets in your rental property professionally cleaned regularly. After all, this property is your investment and you want to take care of it. The quality and longevity of the carpets are a part of that investment and when you have people renting out your condo frequently there is above normal wear and tear. The best time to have your carpets professionally cleaned will be right after whatever your busy season is.
- Replace the air filters. Again, it doesn’t seem like you’re directly protecting your things but it’s all a part of your investment. Even your home away from home needs regular maintenance. This is a quick and easy upgrade to your rental property before spring hits. It helps keep the air you breathe and your air ducts clean as well as increase the efficiency of your air conditioning unit.
Any home that is rented out is going to have more than normal wear and tear, so it’s important to remember the things listed above to help protect your property. However, it’s important that you not only protect your property but also protect yourself. The best way to protect yourself and your investment from liability is with insurance. I know, I myself am very allergic to any discussion involving insurance but it is something that has to be discussed.
The first thing you will want to know is what’s already covered by your condo association. Most condo associations will have general coverage available for you, but for those who don’t there are three basic things you will want to look for:
- Building Property Protection. This covers any damage to the structure itself such as a broken window, busted wall, and so on. Whether you do the damage or your renter does, the insurance company should cover it under this basic protection.
- Personal Property Coverage. If any of your personal belongings are damaged or stolen they will be covered if you have this plan.
- Personal Liability Coverage. In the event that someone renting your property injures themselves on site this coverage will protect you from a lawsuit and provide compensation for their medical bills.
- Flood Coverage. I’m only listing this because flood is not always covered in a standard homeowner’s policy. Flood insurance may not be necessary for everyone, but for those near large bodies of water, it is something you may want to look in to.
After you’ve checked to make sure your insurance has all of your property covered, it’s important that you familiarize yourself with the local and state codes for health, building, and safety and to make sure your rental property meets those requirements. This is one easy way to make sure you’re preventing personal liability and protecting yourself. You want your condo to be safe, sound, and very habitable. Fix doors, patch leaks, and whatever else may need to be done. In the end, it will save you a lot of trouble.
It’s not too late to do the things on this list! Ask yourself if you feel your property and belongings are 100% safe? If you’re not completely positive then you should consider taking action on some or all of the items listed. Take these simple measures to ensure your belongings and your property are ready for the vacationing season ahead!