When your tenant has given a 30-day notice, you’ll need to be prepared for both the vacancy and the turnover process. This can be expensive, and during a vacancy you aren’t earning any rental income. We understand the urgency of completing a turnover in an efficient and timely manner. This does require some of your involvement as a property owner.

Evaluating your Vacant Rental Property

If we have previously marketed and placed a tenant in your unit, we will evaluate the condition of the Grand Rapids rental property before we begin marketing. Our goal is to market all properties prior to the existing tenant moving out. However, there are circumstances that would prohibit this such as the tenant’s unwillingness to clean or accommodate showings. If the property is in bad condition or has a recent report of bed bugs, roaches, or fleas, we will wait to begin marketing after it has been cleaned.

Once the tenant vacates, our rent-ready team will respond to the property within 24 hours to change the locks and to develop a list of damages for which the previous tenant should be billed. At the same time, we will prepare a rent-ready inspection report. You’ll be required to review and approve this report. This is an exhaustive inspection that includes pest monitors, plumbing fixtures, electrical functions, and a review of appliances, checking smoke alarms, outlets, and light bulbs.

We also provide quotes on suggested or required upgrades that could include carpet replacement, floor refinishing, painting, etc. The time it takes to complete this inspection will depend on the quality and the condition of your unit.

Managing Security Deposit Returns

Our team will handle the disposition of the security deposit with the tenant who has moved out. The security deposit laws are extensive, and we have experience in not only settling disputes outside of court but also inside of a court hearing. This is not a process I would recommend getting involved in. Courts are very tenant-friendly when it comes to security deposit disputes, and you’ll want an expert arguing your case.

Owner Approval and Communication

After you receive the inspection report, we will wait for your approval before moving forward on any repairs or upgrades. If we already have a tenant ready to move in, we are under a deadline and the work becomes more critical. If we have pre-leased your property, we will do the minimal repairs necessary to turn your property over as the tenant has already seen it and approved.

It’s also helpful for you to give us advance notice when you know of any larger projects or quotes that you may want during a vacancy. For instance, if you want your windows replaced, let us know so we can start gathering those quotes. The best time to complete repairs is during the vacancy. This will help the property rent and sometimes even increase the rental price.

Our goal with each property is to limit the vacancy to the best of our ability. This is always subject to the owner’s approval and ability to pay. If you’re an owner who likes to handle turnovers without our help, we have another blog and video that might interest you. You should know, however, that rarely do the savings of doing your own turnover translate into higher ROI. It takes longer, and there are almost always unanticipated problems. On average, each day a unit is vacant results in $30 of lost income. This adds up quickly and shows the importance of this process.

Once the property is ready to be rented again, our coordinator will hire a professional photographer to photograph the property, assuming it hasn’t been previously marketed. It will take about 24 hours to edit the pictures before they are online. Once the photographs are complete, the listing will be made live and our leasing team takes over.

Owner Approval and CommunicationIf you have any additional questions about the turnover process, please feel free to contact us at United Properties of West Michigan.