Landlords urged to keep eye on New Year’s Eve parties

Landlords urged to keep eye on New Year’s Eve parties

Posted on Friday, December 11 2015 at 11:54 AM

’Tis the season to be jolly, but landlords are being warned to make sure the ensuing folly doesn’t hit them in the pocket.

New Year’s Eve rental property
parties can leave an expensive financial hangover for unsuspecting landlords
warns landlord insurance specialist Terri Scheer Insurance.

Executive manager Carolyn
Parrella says New Year’s Eve parties are a source of stress for many landlords.

“While tenants should be
responsible for the rental property, invited party guests, who often have no
attachment to the property, may not treat it with the same respect as they
would their own home.

“New Year’s Eve parties that
get out of hand can leave landlords susceptible to costly damage and clean-up

She does say, however, that
there are a number of steps for landlords to “New Year’s Eve-proof” their

Screen tenants

“Prevention is often better
than the cure,” Parrella says. “Tenants are entitled to enjoy their time at the
property, however it must be done with respect and consideration for the

“Including lifestyle questions
on the lease application can help to identify and minimise future issues. Does
the applicant have regular visitors or guests? What type of activities will be
undertaken at the rental property? Landlords can use such questions to help
filter potentially troublesome tenants.

“Renter history checks can also
identify any past issues of accidental damage that may be attributed to
out-of-control partying.”

Enforce lease agreement

“Setting the ground rules
upfront and in writing can help avoid future headaches,” she says.

“A rental agreement may allow
landlords to enforce noise restrictions, such as no loud music after 10pm, and
a maximum number of guests at the property at any one time.

“It’s a common oversight by
landlords not to use the formal rental contract as a way to outline a tenant’s
responsibilities. This can help prevent the likelihood of parties and trouble
arising on New Year’s Eve. As the holiday season approaches, it’s also an
opportunity to remind tenants of their obligation set out in the rental

Maintain relationships and communication

“Maintaining a positive, open
and transparent relationship with tenants will help put landlords in good stead
ahead of New Year’s Eve festivities,” Parrella explains.

“Responding quickly to queries
and concerns can help build a good rapport with tenants, making them more inclined
to treat the property as though it were their own.”

Conduct property inspections

“Property inspections should be
non-negotiable and should be scheduled both before and after the holiday

“Regular inspections can
provide early indications of a tenant that may fail to fulfill their rental
agreement obligations if accidental or malicious damage is identified.
Likewise, post-New Year’s Eve inspections can help identify any accidental
damage incurred during the holiday season.

“This also shows the tenant
that the landlord has an active interest in the care taken with their property
and helps reinforce the conditions under which the tenant has leased the

Review insurance coverage

“The holiday season is a time
that can carry a heightened risk of accidental damage to investment properties,
making a specialised landlord insurance policy all the more important,”
Parrella continues.

“Too often property investors
overlook risk management until after a tenant has moved in or when something has
gone wrong.

a specialised landlord insurance policy can protect investors from the many
risks associated with owning a rental property and provide peace of mind if the
unforeseen should occur.” 

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