Rental Property Inspection Laws for Landlords

Written By PropertyLoop
February 17, 2021

As can be expected landlords will want to ensure that their property is protected during the course of each tenancy. Similarly, to the intent behind taking out landlords’ insurance, regular inspections of a portfolio will help owners understand the behaviour and conduct of the tenants in their properties, stay ahead of any essential repairs and improve relationships with tenants?  But does a landlord need permission to enter a rental property?  

Rental Property Inspection Laws for Landlords, PropertyLoop

How Much Notice Should a Landlord Give for an Inspection?   

Before trying to gain entry to their rental property it is essential that the owner provides the occupants with at least 24 hours’ notice of their intent. This notice functions as a request for entry, meaning the landlord will be required to offer justification for their visit, typically repair work or an inspection.  

Not only is this minimum notice period enforced through the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, but the legislation also demands that the inspection of the rental property is carried out during a reasonable time of the day.  

What Do They Check In a Landlord Inspection?   

It goes without saying that landlords will look for any signs of damage in their rental property, commonly taking the form of damp, outbreaks of mould, leaks, signs of wear and tear and faulty appliances. It is also worth noting that the occupants of a rental property have an obligation to inform the landlord of any essential repairs, or damage that has occurred within the rental.  

Can Tenants Refuse Entry?   

Although owners will undoubtedly find this somewhat frustrating, upon the singing of the tenancy agreement the occupants of the rental property are empowered to dictate which parties are able to gain access to the grounds of the property, alongside when this can happen. Landlords are not exempt from this, meaning that tenants are able to turn away a landlord from their home.  

With this being said in the majority of instances the visit is rejected as the proposed time for the visit will have been inconvenient for the occupants of the property. But what if the landlord is unable to gain access in order to carry out a periodic property inspection.  

If access is continually refused then the landlord or agent will be required to turn to the courts in order to have a formal application to enter the rental legally enforced. However, owners are still able to issue a section 21 notice and reclaim possession of the property once the fixed term has come to an end.  

Can You Take Photos During a Rental Inspection?   

Similarly, to the start of the fixed term with the process of curating a property inventory, both tenants and landlords are encouraged to thoroughly document the condition of the property that is being rented. If the landlord is able to evidence any damage to the property that has occurred during the tenancy, then they will be able to recuperate the costs associated with repairs through a deduction from the tenant’s security deposit.  

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