How to handle this situation?

6 Replies

I have my current tenant moving out at the end of this month and have scheduled a showing this weekend.  I let my current tenant know a few days in advance.

My current tenant is saying that it's not a good idea to show the unit because it has boxes everywhere because they will be moving out.  I've re-stated that it will be okay and they pushed back again.

My question is, do you do an inspection of the property before you show the condo to potentially new tenants?

Do you still show the messy property even though if it's not going to present well?  I mean we can't force the current tenant to clean up 

How would you approach this situation?

There is a mixed bag in NJ. Some believe and rely on an untested rule that for showing an apartment a tenant must give consent.

That being said you have every right to go in and inspect before hand. That is different from showing. Besides my town requires a CO for every change over so I would foresee at least 2 visits/ inspections.

I personally would give appropriate notice to do an inspection and decide whether it would be more advantageous to clean/paint/repair and show it. Lose a months rent but be in a better position to make more. If it is just about cleanliness it is a different story. 

Originally posted by @Patrick M. :

There is a mixed bag in NJ. Some believe and rely on an untested rule that for showing an apartment a tenant must give consent.

That being said you have every right to go in and inspect before hand. That is different from showing. Besides my town requires a CO for every change over so I would foresee at least 2 visits/ inspections.

I personally would give appropriate notice to do an inspection and decide whether it would be more advantageous to clean/paint/repair and show it. Lose a months rent but be in a better position to make more. If it is just about cleanliness it is a different story. 

 This makes sense, I think its better to push it back.  If I was a potential tenant I would want to see my next "home" in good condition compared to boxes everywhere.  On top of that I'm not getting full consent from the current tenant.  

You will not normally get a decent tenant if you show a messy unit.  They will forever think of you as a slum lord.  They'll be looking for problems and expect to have to argue with you to get anything done.

And you probably won't get great tenants.  You'll get tenants who are desperate enough to rent some place that looks like a dump and who are willing to rent from landlords who rent out dumpy units.

I tried at one point to rent places while tenants were still in them or while tenants were moving.  It never went well.

Get the place empty, clean, painted and ready to go before showing it.  You'll get way better tenants that way.

It's the same thing as buying property.  Are you going to pay top dollar for a property for sale that is full of junk and needs cleaning, as you would for a place that's been cleaned and staged?

Do you know the Tenant? A little messy is OK . If you know the current tenant is a complete slob don't show. if you haven't seen it in a while preview it.

Our lease includes the requirement for access for showings and sign/lockbox placement during the last month of a lease.  Any potential tenants are informed well in advance that the unit is in transition, and it is also and opportunity to explain what will be done for turnover as far as paint, cleaning, etc.

The existing tenant is also coached that the faster the property leases, the faster the showings will stop.  It encourages cooperation.

Do the showing, I managed a 120 unit building we didn't have a model apartment, I told people to expect the fact the people are boxing up and the unit is in that state.

I didn't have the luxury of holding off for a vacant unit some units were terrible some OK,, but get in and show it.. your early lookers want to lock down a new lease and I wouldn't lose those people.

one point is to set several showings for the same time frame like with in a hour. I'd show the unit, wait for next person to come in my car and show the unit again,, less disturbance for tenant,, I'd say I have several people buy I've jammed them up to within this next hour.. worked well.

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