Handling Property Repairs: A Checklist for Landlords

Real estate is often thought of as a great way to get into the investment game, and while it is a great investment strategy, it comes with a lot of responsibilities. These responsibilities include ensuring the property is well-maintained to avoid wasting money unnecessarily on repairs. In this article, we will look into the process of handling property repairs from the perspective of a landlord, including a checklist to help landlords track what needs to be done.

Why is Handling Property Repairs Important?

Repairs to a rental property can be expensive and time-consuming if not properly managed. Landlords should aim to provide top-notch maintenance to their tenants so they can reap the rewards of their investment for years to come. Keeping a property in good condition also helps keep tenants happy and ensures that rental rates are kept competitive.

What Should Landlords Add to their Checklist?

Landlords should create a detailed checklist to ensure that all property repairs are addressed. Here are some of the items that should be included in a property repair checklist:

1. Check the Roof and Gutters

Landlords should check the roof and gutters for any damage caused by wear or weather. If the roof is damaged, it can lead to leaks and other costly problems.

2. Inspect Appliances and Utilities

It’s also important to inspect all appliances, such as the heating, air conditioning, plumbing, and other utilities. This will help landlords catch any problems before they become bigger, more expensive problems.

3. Evaluate Structural Damage

Landlords should also check to see if there are any structural issues with the property, such as cracks in the foundation or walls. If there are any problems, landlords should make sure to address them as soon as possible.

4. Examine Electrical Systems

The wiring in a rental property should also be inspected regularly to ensure it is up to code and functioning properly. Any issues should be repaired immediately to avoid costly repair bills down the line.

5. Inspect Mold and Mildew

Mold and mildew can pose a huge risk to a rental property, and landlords should inspect the property on a regular basis for any signs of mold or mildew build up. If there are any issues, landlords should make sure to address them immediately.

6. Check for Pest Problems

Finally, landlords should inspect the property for any signs of pests or critters. If there are any signs, they should contact an exterminator to take care of the problem immediately.

What Should Landlords Do Once They Identify a Problem?

Once a landlord identifies an issue with the property, they should take the necessary steps to ensure the issue is resolved quickly and correctly. The following steps should be taken:

1. Develop a Plan of Action

The first step to resolution is to develop a plan of action. The plan should include the steps that need to be taken to fix the problem, who needs to be contacted (if applicable), and the budget and timeline for the repair.

2. Contact the Right Professionals

Once a plan of action is developed, the landlord should then contact the appropriate professionals to get the problem rectified. This could mean hiring a plumber, electrician, or contractor, depending on the issue.

3. Stay in Communication

It’s important for landlords to stay in communication with the professionals they’ve hired to make sure the job is being done correctly and within the agreed upon time frame.

4. Follow up After the Repair is Made

Finally, landlords should follow up after the repair is made to ensure the problem did not recur. This will ensure that landlords can keep their tenants happy and avoid unexpected and costly repairs.


Managing a rental property can be a daunting task, but with proper preparation, landlords can ensure their properties remain in top condition. By following the checklist and steps outlined above, landlords will be able to take control of property repair issues quickly and efficiently. The key is to stay organized and stay on top of any issues that arise, as well as all regular maintenance. With the right tools and processes in place, rental properties can stay in tip-top condition for years to come.

What responsibilities do landlords have to maintain a rental property?

1. Landlords must meet all applicable building, housing, and health standards set by the local government.

2. They must make all necessary repairs to all structures, appliances, and fixtures.

3. Landlords must keep all common areas clean and safe for tenants.

4. Landlords must have a valid business license.

5. Landlords must follow fair housing practices and discrimination laws.

6. Landlords must install and maintain smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors in all rental units.

7. Landlords must ensure all rental units are in compliance with local zoning laws and requirements.

8. Landlords must provide tenants with a written notice of their rights and responsibilities.

9. Landlords must make sure their rental property is equipped with locks and other safety measures.

10. Landlords must provide tenants with a copy of their lease agreement and all other relevant documents.

What penalties do landlords face for not fulfilling their responsibilities as a rental property owner?

Landlords may face civil and criminal penalties, depending on the nature of their violations. In some cases, they may have to pay a fine to the state or local government agency that oversees their rental property; in other circumstances, they may face criminal charges, such as a criminal misdemeanor or felony. Penalties can also include restitution for damages done, repayment of automatic late fees, and eviction of tenants. If a landlord is found to be in violation of state and local tenant-landlord laws, they may also be subject to fines and be forced to make necessary repairs to the property.

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