New landlord protecting themselves from damages

7 Replies

I am purchasing 7 units, 6 currently have tenants. How do I protect myself from tenant damages when they move out? For example, one home has a broken window. The current owner says the current tenant must have done that and that I should take it out of the security deposit when the tenant moves out. How do I avoid having the tenant say it was like that before they moved in?

This is why you conduct move in and move out inspections with the tenant present.  It may be tough to do with inherited tenants because you weren't there when they moved in but this is a good way to handle it going forward

For the broken window I would eat it.  Unless you have evidence it was broken by the tenant the court will side against you if it goes that far.

I should have clarified my wording a little better. We own other rental homes. We always do inspections at move in/out.  This is our first time purchasing with tenants. I didn't know if there was a form, similar to an estoppel signed by both parties, we could have completed related to any damages the current owner sees that were not there when the tenant moved in. 

if current owner has a detailed move in inspection, then I would go based off that. Any grey areas between move in and current condition, I would eat the cost. When you take possession, take a detailed inspection and photos and any damages between now and move-out can be taken from security.

Like @Bill Pate said, maybe just eat it. Unless you can get something *in writing* from prev owner preferably with pictures and notations with dates you will lose. You can alw review your leases and be more aggressive wIth protectons than prev LL (with legal confines). Expect pushback from current tenants. I’ve been thru this, trust me. But stick to your guns. Once you get them on a new lease, they follow your rules.
@ANGELA DOTHAGE . I would fix it now and eat the cost unless you can make it a condition of sale for the current owner to replace it. I don’t think it is worth losing the property over though so i would jist fix it. Having windows is a necessity in my opinion and should be fixed ASAP and not after the tenant moves out.