Landlords Fail To Conduct Periodic Inspections Miss Warning Signs

Periodic Inspections Save Landlords Money

Inspect Rental Properties Regularly To Avoid Insurance Claims

Inspect Rental Properties Regularly To Avoid Insurance Claims

UK private rented sector (PRS) landlords are missing the tell tale warning signs of damage to their rental assets because they do not carry out regular periodic inspections of their rental properties and they have poor communication with their tenants.

The result is that many landlords end up having to pay out or make an insurance claim for expensive repairs to make the rental property habitable, costs that could be minimised by ensuring periodic inspection and  maintenance visits.

Periodic inspections are essential to check on the overall condition of the rental property and ensure that the tenants are not neglecting their responsibilities. Any repair issues can be identified and dealt with quickly, reducing the landlord’s financial obligation.

Landlords should visit their rental properties in person or arrange for the managing agent to attend on a regular basis, generally every three months, periodic inspection is the landlords legal right and notifying the tenant in writing outlining their intention to enter the rental property to assess the interior conditions is an acceptable reason to enter the property without infringing on the tenants right to quiet enjoyment of the rental property. There may be a small charge to pay for the attendance of the agent but the cost is far outweighed by the benefit of communicating with their tenants and identifying potential damage early.

Regular maintenance checks help to identify the warning signs of any potential damage to the rental property and really can be the difference between expensive remedial works or a costly landlord insurance claim, rather than a simple and swift minor repair.

Water damage left unreported

Water damage left unreported,

E.g. Water leaking from a first floor bathroom had been spotted by a tenant who had not reported the problem back to the landlord’s managing agent, until the ceiling began to fall down. The tenant said that the leak had been getting consistently worse, but hadn’t bothered to mention it as they were due to move out within a few weeks.

The resulting repair meant that the landlord had to claim against their landlord insurance policy for the ceiling to be repaired, however they were able to successfully argue that the tenant’s negligence had exacerbated the damage and a proportion of the tenant’s deposit was retained by the landlord as a result.


UK PRS Landlords should look out for the following warning signs when carrying out regular periodic inspections on their rental properties:

  • Water stains on ceilings and walls, especially in rooms below bathrooms
  • Signs of mould spores anywhere in the property, but especially in corners and around windows & on curtains, grouting or bath sealant. Tenants should be educated as to their responsibilities regarding damp and condensation prevention.
  • Water damage to flooring or skirting (from either leaks or overflow of bath/shower water)
  • Exterior and interior window frames for rotting, flaking etc which could lead to water ingress
  • Signs of vermin infestation such as rodent droppings in kitchen cupboards or corners of rooms
  • Dripping guttering or deteriorating soffit boards
  • The general condition of the external spaces belonging to the rental property including front and rear gardens and yards.

Tenants can be really poor at reporting problems that happen during the term of a tenancy and often leave it until serious damage has occurred before notifying anyone. Tenants tend to think that repairs are someone else’s problem because the property is rented.

A useful and practical way to resolve the general lack of care shown by many tenants is to issue written guidelines outlining tenant repair obligations and provide practical information regarding the minimising of damp and condensation damage.

Maintenance issues and property damage are often only revealed at the tenant check-out because of a lack of communication between the tenant and landlord or managing agent. Without regular periodic inspections by landlords (or their appointed managing agents), potential problems are allowed to deteriorate further by tenants, increasing the overall cost of a full repair.

Don’t get caught out, make sure your Landlord Insurance is up to date!