When tenants occupy a rental unit, the properties exhibit effects of use. Property maintenance is an indispensable part of owning a Merced rental property and when a landlord decides to rent out their rental property, you need to factor in the costs of damages and repair.
According to standard lease agreements, the landlord may hold the tenants liable for any significant damages to the property. However, normal wear and tear of the property are not the tenants’ responsibility.
What is Normal Wear and Tear?
The gradual deterioration of the property with time is known as normal wear and tear. This natural deterioration is inevitable and can happen even when tenants take proper care of the unit. It includes fading of the carpet, worn curtains and blinds, scuff marks on countertops, floorboards, and doors.
On the other hand, any deliberate signs of damages like flooded bathrooms, broken doors, and countertops are caused due to rough usage and neglect. This can be identified as property damage as opposed to normal wear and tear.
Identifying normal damage versus inflicted damage can be challenging at times. Here are a few identifiers that will help you in striking a difference.
Normal Wear and Tear Examples for Your Rental Property
- Change in the texture of walls
Given that the lifetime of most paints is around three years, it is very normal for freshly painted walls to deteriorate over time. It can result in peeled-off paint, chipped patches, minor scuffs due to furniture, and dulled color. These are the signs of normal wear and tear in the house.
However, if there are scribbles, stains, deep dents, unpatched holes, or unapproved paint jobs on the walls, it can be considered inflicted damage.
- Common deterioration of floor
Since floors are surfaces that are used continually, it is natural that they will show deterioration and signs of active life in the house. If the flooring is wooden and has a lifespan of decades, there might be damage done due to direct sunlight, dust, and scuff marks from daily activities.
On the other hand, carpets have a lifespan of around five years and might see worn areas around the furniture placement, slight tears, and accumulation of dirt and dust. It is common for such floorings to undergo normal wear and tear differently.
- Plumbing and electrical fixtures
Plumbing systems also undergo considerable wear and tear. old pipes can result in leakage. They can rust and also have fungus accumulated over them due to consistent wetness.
Electrical fixtures if not changed over the years can also cease to work. It includes non-functional electrical outlets and ports, as well as lights. If there are no signs of inflicted damage on these things, they are likely to be a result of normal wear and tear.
- Functionally of Appliances
Appliances that you have provided with the property can also become less functional. Most electronic appliances like refrigerators, microwaves, and washing machines have a considerable warranty and have rare chances of an earlier breakdown.
If an appliance has significant damage even during the warranty period, it might be a result of damage caused by the tenant. It can happen due to misuse or negligence.
Often identifying signs of normal deterioration from inflicted damage can become tricky. Understanding these basic examples or indicators of normal wear and tear can ease your job. As a responsible Merced property owner, you should take help from professional property managers who can better identify the nature of the damage, and take further steps. Contact us for any Merced property management needs.