As a Muskegon rental property owner, you know that your residents usually have serious personal safety concerns. As new residents move into a rental home, they might bring up questions regarding the changing the locks to make sure that past residents or other people with keys to the property can no longer get into the residence. Local laws in some areas do not require a landlord to change the locks between residents, and certain property owners believe that this expense is not necessary.
If the resident asks, do you need to change or re-key the locks?
The simple answer is no, you are most likely not required to change the locks upon request. However, you have to consider the possible consequences of not doing so.
As the property owner, you are responsible for giving your Muskegon residents the means to safeguard the home. When residents sign the lease, you give them with keys, garage door openers, or passcodes so that they can access the property but also so that they can secure the property. Residents tend to produce multiple copies of their keys for family members or even neighbors, and they may not always remember to collect and properly get rid of these copies when they move out of a rental home.
If you don’t change or re-key the locks, and someone gets illicit access to the residence, you can be hit a lawsuit and held responsible for damages. Particularly in cases of domestic abuse, divorce, or family problems, or even if an old roommate is a concern, changing the locks between residents is an essential step in protecting yourself from legal liability.
Of course, the locks are only one part of a rental home’s system. Garage door openers, keypads, and other access devices are potential risks as well. Residents might share entry codes with babysitters, repairmen, or others who require access to the home when they are not there. Meticulous management of passcodes, remote controls, and so on must be part of your property management strategy, including changing codes or replacing remote controls as needed to help ensure the safety of your residents.
At Real Property Management Investment Solutions, we want to make certain that the only people who have access to your rental properties are your residents. That is why we include lock changes between residents as an important component of our property management services. Our approach is meant to protect you and your properties with the best practices in the industry. To find out more, contact us online or call us at 616-419-8880 today.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.