Simply Residential Maintenance

Owners of investment properties seek out a valued property management partner for many reasons, with maintenance being one of the most common. Maintenance calls from tenants can come at any time of the day and night and typically require some expertise. Some issues are small and easily managed. Others take time and come with costs. Whatever the issue, Simply Residential is happy to take maintenance calls 24/7, 365 days a year. In an ideal world, maintenance issues would be corrected quickly and at minimal cost to our client. But often the reason a project takes longer and costs occur is outside of our control.

Project Time

Simply Residential strives to perform maintenance quickly, efficiently and safely. We’re aware that maintenance can affect liability and a property owner’s ability to maintain a city rental license. Many factors influence the speed maintenance can be completed:

• May-Sept is a busy time for contractors, which may delay specialized work.
•Tenants often want to be home for maintenance visits. Working with a tenant’s busy schedule will slow how quickly we gain property access.
• Retailers like Home Depot often need parts and products shipped from distribution centers, which can mean a delay of 7-10 days.

We do all we can to minimize the turnaround time of maintenance but some delays are beyond our control.

Project Cost

Simply Residential doesn’t relish asking our clients to approve a repair or replacement cost. But maintenance expenditures are often an unpleasant and unavoidable part of doing business in property investment.
appliance lifespanA common cost of doing business is managing home appliances. Like all things, appliances have varying life expectancies that are affected by age, brand, availability of parts and more. Sometimes they break down before they should. Perhaps there is some truth in the saying that, “they don’t make things like they used to.” While there is no definitive guide to accurately predicting an appliance’s lifespan, the graph to the right shows the average life expectancy for various home appliances and equipment. Appliance failure is just part of doing business. We advise clients to set aside 10% of their investment property income to cover maintenance.

Our Approach

It’s important to note that long before any maintenance incident, Simply Residential works to detect problems in advance. We regularly communicate with tenants and encourage reporting of maintenance concerns. We also offer our owners a preventative maintenance service package as a way to get in front of those issues. But we know that not all issues can be predicted nor avoided.
As a valued client, everyone on the Simply Residential team is dedicated to your property. We’re your property’s biggest fans! If your property was a sports team, we’d be purchasing and wearing their jerseys!
So, the next time you hear from our maintenance staff, please be patient and know that we’re working hard to facilitate positive change for your property.

The Basics of Fair Housing Laws

This post was written by
 Jeff O’Brien for Simply Residential Property Management Magazine.

People who work in the areas of renting, selling, lending or insuring homes are subject to federal, state and sometimes local fair housing and other anti-discrimination laws. Recently, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) released guidance indicating that landlords who turn down tenants based upon their criminal records may violate the Fair Housing Act. This article focuses on residential landlords’ fair housing responsibilities and tenants’ rights under the Fair Housing Act, particularly in regards to the statute’s prohibitions against discrimination.

Discrimination Claims Under the Fair Housing Act

The Fair Housing Act (the “Act”) is codified at Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, 42 U.S.C. §§ 3601 et seq. The HUD regulations implementing the Act are at 24 C.F.R. Parts 100 through 125. The HUD regulations “ordinarily command considerable deference…” Gladstone Realtors v. Village of Bellwood, 441 U.S. 91, 107 (1979). The Act, which applies to both government and private defendants, makes it unlawful to discriminate because of race, color, religion, sex, familial status, national origin
or handicap. 42 U.S.C. § 3604(a), (f). (The words “disability” and “handicap” are used interchangeably.) “Familial status” refers to households with a child or children under 18 or a person who is pregnant or in the process of securing legal custody of a child under 18.

hud-fair-housing FINALThe Act broadly prohibits the refusal to sell, rent, or negotiate for sale or rental, or acts that “otherwise make unavailable or deny” dwellings. It also specifically prohibits making statements indicating preferences (§ 3604(c)) or discriminating in terms, conditions, privileges, services or facilities (§ 3604(b)). It applies to “dwellings,” including vacant land offered for sale or lease for dwellings. The Act has been held to apply to mobile home parks, homeless shelters, and summer homes. See United States v. Columbus Country Club, 915 F.2d 877 (3d Cir. 1990), cert. denied, 501 U.S. 1205 (1991); accord, Hovsons, Inc. v. Township of Brick, 89 F.3d 1096 (3d Cir. 1996) (nursing home). The U.S. Supreme Court has held unanimously that the language of the Act is “broad and inclusive,” implementing a “policy that Congress considered to be of the highest priority,” requiring “a generous construction” of the statute. Trafficante v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 409 U.S. 205, 209, 211, 212 (1972).

It is important to note that intent is not required to establish liability under the Act. Prima facie liability can be established by a showing of disparate effect. The courts of appeals have adopted different standards for determining disparate effect. The Eighth Circuit (which includes the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota) set forth its test to establish a prima facie FHA disparate impact claim in the case of Oti Kaga, Inc. v. South Dakota Housing Dev. Auth, 342 F.3d 871 (8th Cir. 2003). Under the Oti Kaga test, the plaintiff must demonstrate that the objected-to-action results in, or can be predicted to result in, a disparate impact upon a protected class compared to a relevant population as a whole. Oti Kaga, 342 F.3d at 883; see also Charleston Housing Auth. v. U.S. Department of Agriculture, 419 F.3d 729, 740-41 (8th Cir. 2005). Under the second step of the disparate impact burden shifting analysis, the defendant must demonstrate that the proposed action has a “manifest relationship” to the legitimate non-discriminatory policy objectives and “is justifiable on the ground it is necessary to” the attainment of these objectives. Oti Kaga, 342 F.3d at 883; Charleston Housing Auth., 419 F.3d at 741.

The courts recognize two kinds of discriminatory effect: greater adverse impact on one group than another or harm to the community by the perpetuation of segregation. (Arlington Heights II, 558 F.2d at 1290) Greater adverse impact need not mean that more minorities have been affected; if a larger percentage of minorities has been affected, the standard is satisfied.

In some situations there is direct evidence of intentional discrimination. Where there is no direct evidence, a prima facie case may be established by indirect evidence. Some ways of proving intent by indirect evidence are set out by the Supreme Court in Arlington Heights I (Village of Arlington Heights v. Metropolitan Housing Development Corp., 429 U.S. 252 (1977)). Another, formulaic way to establish a prima facie case is by showing that: (1) the claimant is a member of a protected class; (2) the claimant applied for and was qualified to rent or buy the property at issue; (3) the claimant was rejected; and (4) the housing opportunity remained available.

After the prima facie case of intentional discrimination has been established, the defendant must produce a legitimate, nondiscriminatory reason for its action. If the defendant does so, the burden of production and persuasion shifts to the plaintiff to show that the proffered reason is pretextual.


42 U.S.C. § 3613 authorizes a court to award actual and punitive damages, equitable relief, and, to a prevailing party, a reasonable attorney’s fee and costs. In an administrative proceeding, HUD or the state agency may award actual damages, a civil penalty, and injunctive or other equitable relief. 42 U.S.C.§ 3612(g). HUD is authorized to award damages for emotional distress as well as other forms of loss.

The New HUD Guidance

HUD’s basis for its position that landlords may violate the Act by rejecting applicants based upon their criminal records stems from its view that because of widespread racial and ethnic disparities in the U.S. criminal justice system, criminal
history based restrictions on access to housing are likely disproportionately to burden African Americans under the “disparate impact” analysis.


HUD’s recently released guidance should give landlords pause as to their exposure to discrimination claims under the Fair Housing Act. In close cases, consultation with an attorney knowledgeable about the Act is a must.

Jeffrey C. O’Brien is an attorney with the Minneapolis-based law firm of Lommen Abdo, P.A. voice of the “Legal Minute on Minnesota Home Talk, heard Saturdays on 1500 ESPN, and a Minnesota State Bar Association Board Certified Real Property Specialist. He can be reached at (612) 336-9317 or via email at

In Focus: The Rental Scam

Avoiding the Rental Scam

Could you recognize a rental scam if you saw one? Rental scams have become a major problem in the rental industry, as scammers have found creative ways to use online rental postings to lure unsuspecting tenants. There are a few different versions of the rental scam, but it basically works like this:

Scammers take property descriptions and images from existing and legitimate postings for rental and sales properties. They re-purpose the information for their own online scam post. The potential tenant finds the property online and is none the wiser that they are reaching out to a scammer. The scammer typically claims to be temporarily out of the country, so the only opportunity to view the property is via a drive-by. Getting the keys to the property only requires a wire transfer deposit to for the application fee, security deposit or first month’s rent.

Before the potentell tale mag-2tial tenant realizes, the scam has been completed. The wired money is lost and the scammer is long gone. Rental scams happen every day and it’s unfortunate to hear about the loss and suffering they cause. But there are ways to combat these scams.

Simply Residential Property Managment does all it can to minimize a scammer’s opportunity to scam tenants. But we also encourage tenants to be vigilant, knowing the warning signs of a rental scam.

Finding the right rental property should be an exciting life event. If you feel you have uncovered a rental scam involving Simply Residential Property Management, please reach out to us immediately.

Planning Ahead for Tax Day in 2017

taxes- simon cunningham

With mid-April comes a sigh of relief. Take a deep breath, you’ve earned it. Tax Day has come and gone. Your 2015 tax filing is now in the rear-view mirror. And while it’s too late to make changes to your 2015 filing, it’s not too early to begin thinking about your 2016 return. Sounds crazy right? We literally JUST celebrated the passing of another Tax Day and we should talk about next year? Know that Simply Residential thinks about taxes year round as we carefully track and document the required tax information for our property owners. You should think about taxes as a year-round opportunity as well, because by following these three simple tips you will ensure your tax filing in April of 2017is easier than the last.

Meet with Your Tax Professional

Tax professionals are so busy leading up to Tax Day that they barely have time to see immediate family, much less discuss next year’s taxes. When the 2016 Tax Day passes and tax professionals begin to regain some semblance of their former life, schedule some time to talk with your tax professional. We at Simply Residential keep in close touch with our tax professional. It’s important to learn about the processes that will make 2017 easier, ensure no important opportunities are missed and stay updated on happenings in the tax community. In between sleeping hibernation and reuniting with family, I’m sure your tax professional would appreciate an off-season meeting over a cup of joe.

Keep Important Tax Deductions in Mind

Investment property owners are eligible for a number of tax deductions. Examples to keep in mind during the year include mortgage loan interest, rental property travel expenses, utilities, maintenance, repairs and legal/management fees. Simply Residential provides its owners with 1099’s each January, but also sends monthly statements during the year.

Examine/Revise Expense Processes

If a folder full of receipts is your current process for bookkeeping, a change is in order. There are two reasons to create a cleaner, more organized approach to tracking your spending. The first is to make preparation for Tax Day in 2017 easier. The second is that properly organized receipts will allow you to maximize your tax savings by spending on certain purchases.  Reducing stress and saving money are two reasons I have a hard time arguing with.

Congrats on surviving another tax day! Simply Residential looks forward to helping our property owners in the year ahead.

Disclaimer: This article merely provides information, rather than advice and should not be viewed as a substitute for the recommendations of a tax professional.
Photo credit:Simon Cunningham;

Tax Day Cometh: 6 Important Tax Deductions for Landlords

Photo credit: reynermedia;

Photo credit: reynermedia;

As Minnesotans, we can count on a few certainties in life. We will complain about winter but most of us will continue to live here year after year.  The purple and gold will annually frustrate fans by not winning the big one, but we will keep cheering “Skol Vikes.” And don’t forget road construction season, which is referred to as ‘summer’ in other states. These are but a few of life’s certainties in Minnesota.

No matter where you live, death and taxes are usually regarded as the two universal guarantees in life. Neither are pleasant topics but both are inevitable. Actually, you can get by without paying taxes but you’re strongly advised against that approach. The government tends to frown on those avoiding taxes and the financial penalties are harsh.

Fortunately, as property owners who rent out their property, tax time can be easier to stomach. There are plenty of tax deductions available to landlords within the U.S. tax code. As always, consult with a tax professional to learn more. Here are a few of the most popular deductions a landlord should keep in mind:

  1. Loan interest if there is a mortgage on your property: This is the big one. If you have a loan on your investment property, the interest is tax deductible. That can be a large amount!
  2. Legal, Professional and Management Fees: With a rental property comes the need for help with taxes, accounting, legal and property management support. These professional fees are tax deductible.
  3. Travel Expenses: If you don’t live near your investment property, we can deduct travel expenses like airfare, ground transportation, food and overnight stays.
  4. Utilities: If you pay for any utilities at your investment property, those costs are deductible. They include gas, electricity, water and city services like garbage and recycling.
  5. Repairs: Repairs refer to fixing items that no longer work properly and include fixtures, plumbing, air conditioning and even the fees for hiring contractors and renting tools for said repairs.
  6. Maintenance: There are plenty of maintenance expenses that are different than ‘repairs’. They include lawn care, pest control, tune-ups on lawn care equipment and even light bulbs and smoke detector batteries!

While Tax Day typically falls on April 15, this year we have a few extra days. That’s due to Emancipation Day being recognized on Friday, April 15. That pushes Tax Day to the following Monday. So you’ve got a few extra days to prepare your taxes. Use them wisely!

Be Proactive to Minimize Your Liability as a Landlord


Photo credit: Got Credit

This post was written by Jeff O’Brien for Simply Residential Property Management Magazine.

Last month, I discussed the pertinent legal standards under Minnesota law for when a landlord can be held liable for injuries to tenants and/or their guests.  This month, I’m going to discuss some basic steps that landlords can take to minimize their exposure to such claims.

The Difference Between Liability and Being Sued

When it comes to civil lawsuits, Minnesota – like most states in the U.S. – is known as a “notice pleading” state.  That means that a plaintiff does not have to prove his/her entire case in the complaint.  If the plaintiff has a good faith basis for a claim, their attorney is permitted under the lawyer ethics rules to commence a lawsuit, and the details of the case are then explored later on during discovery, and then come the motions and, well you get the idea.

What does this mean? It means that, even though ultimately you as a landlord may likely prevail in a lawsuit brought by a tenant, you still have to defend the lawsuit.  Hence, taking some additional steps to prevent exposure for a claim brought by a tenant for injuries is a wise course of action.  Here are a few simple steps you should undertake immediately to audit your level of exposure to a tenant claim:

Use of Liability Limiting Entities

Use of a liability limiting entity such as a limited liability company can insulate a property owner’s personal assets from liability arising from tenant claims.  For best results, it is recommended to own each property in a separate limited liability company (or LLC for short).  In this manner, in the result of a tenant lawsuit related to one property, only the assets of the LLC which owns that property are at risk; in other words, the potential claim should not affect your other properties owned within separate LLCs.

Note that I said that the potential claim should not affect your other properties; in order to make certain that other entities and properties are not affected, you must be certain to respect the corporate formalities of each LLC.  Separate bank accounts should be opened for each separate LLC and the income and expenses relative to each property should be run through those bank accounts.  Do not commingle funds between properties and do not commingle funds from your rental properties with personal funds.  Otherwise you leave yourself open to “veil piercing” claims in the event that a tenant prevails in a lawsuit but finds no assets available to satisfy their judgment from the subject LLC.

Do You Have Adequate Insurance Coverage?

In order to best minimize the risk of liability for injuries to their tenants and/or guests, landlords should make sure that they have adequate insurance coverage – including provision of and payment for legal counsel in the event of a claim – for each of their properties.  If you choose to utilize separate entities for each rental property, make sure that each entity is properly named as the insured under the policy.

Review Your Leases

A final preventive step to take would be to review your leases to make sure that they do not create any express liability occasioned by a tenant injury.

With respect to both the lease review and entity formation matters, use of a knowledgeable attorney to audit your entity documents and lease forms would be a cost effective investment given the alternative of expensive litigation.

Jeffrey C. O’Brien is an attorney with the Minneapolis based law firm of Lommen Abdo, P.A. voice of the “Legal Minute on Minnesota Home Talk, heard Saturdays on 1500 ESPN, and a Minnesota State Bar Association Board Certified Real Property Specialist. He can be reached at (612) 336-9317 or via email at

How Do You Choose a Renter?


One of the main responsibilities of property management firms such as Simply Residential Property Management is the careful screening of prospective tenants. Through a thorough and comprehensive background check into a tenant’s credit history and available public records, property management companies are better able to select responsible tenants who will uphold the conditions that are stated in the lease. The performance of background checks greatly reduces the instances of non-payment of rent, damage to property and evictions of bad tenants.

A main component of the background checks performed by the staff of Simply Residential Property Management is a comprehensive screening of a prospective tenant’s criminal history and public record information. Those tenants who have histories of property damage, theft, violence and any drug or sexual-related offenses will not be allowed to rent a property managed by Simply Residential Property Management. These offenses can greatly jeopardize and safety and welfare of both staff and other tenants.

Another important part of the selection criteria employed by Simply Residential Property Management is the verification of income. Having a consistent and stable form of verifiable income is a strong indicator that the monthly rent will be paid on time. Prospective tenants are able to send the necessary tax forms and other important documents which contain their income information to a representative of Simply Residential Property Management by telephone or by fax. In order to qualify, renters must make three times as much income as the cost to rent the property.

Looking at a potential tenant’s work history goes hand in hand with the verification of income. A stable work history shows not only that a prospective tenant can handle the responsibilities that come with employment as well as shows a verifiable and steady source of income. Additionally, if a prospective tenant is consistently employed in an occupation that is a higher-salary position, that could be a factor that can be weighed a little heavier than other factors.

A renter’s credit history is also thoroughly reviewed by staff at Simply Residential Property Management. Credit reports can indicate the overall financial shape a prospective tenant is in at the time of application. Credit reports are histories which show what financial obligations tenants have and how those obligations are being paid. Additionally, credit reports can have property management staff an indication of how prospective tenants have honored past debts. If a tenant has a past history of bankruptcy, collections activity or has unpaid rent from previous residences, the chances of renting decrease. However, it is important to note that if potential clients are upfront about their past credit mistakes, property management firms may be more likely to try and work with those tenants.

In the unfortunate event that a prospective tenant’s application has been denied, Simply Residential Property Management will be notified by staff regarding that decision by first class mail. Staff at Simply Residential Property Management may also deny applications from tenants if they feel those prospective tenants may jeopardize the stability of both the property and residents. While extensive background checks are not able to catch all bad tenants, they greatly reduce those instances so residents can enjoy both safety and peace of mind.

Things to Consider Before Renovating Your Rental Property


When it comes to the renovation of your rental property, there are a number of things that you have to consider. First of all, statistics show that the majority of the money that is spent on renovations will never be recouped. This means that you should consider carefully if renovations for your property are really necessary.

The ROI (Return on Investment)
First things first, consider whether or not the renovations will up the value of your investment, or attract more potential renters. Not every single renter will be looking for a kitchen that has been recently renovated. However, a kitchen that is outdated or not decorated well can definitely be a turn off. Old or ugly cabinets or cheap and chipped counters can sent potential tenants running for the hills. Keep in mind, you can give the kitchen a facelift without having to completely redo the entire space. Consider some smaller repairs that need to be made, which will increase the ROI you receive.

The Hidden Costs Associated with a Renovation
When it comes to remodeling your rental property, there will always be additional consists that you did not anticipate – even smaller jobs. After you calculate all of the potential expenses of the project, you should always add an extra 10 to 20 percent depending on the actual estimate that you are given. This will help you get a much better idea of the costs that you will be having to pay.

You should also not forget to include the costs of any additional tools that you might have to purchase, the gas that will be necessary for picking up materials and any extra things that you may need.

Finding the Right Professional for the Job
A key to the success of your remodeling project will be to find the right contractor. If you are unsure of who to use, this may result in you using a contractor that is not as experienced as you may be able to find. This is when the contacts that a property manager has can be extremely beneficial. They will likely have on-going relationships will all types of contractors who will be able to work on your property for a fair cost and the job will be completed in a timely manner.

It is important to avoid simply choosing the first contractor that you come across. This will likely result in less than ideal results. If you have a rental property in Minnesota that you are considering having remodeled, then you definitely need to contact Simply Residential Property Management. They will ensure that your project is successful and affordable.

Questions about renovating your rental property? Contact us today at!

Pricing Your Rental Property

Startup Stock Photos

It’s one of the most common questions we get as a property management company: How much will my home rent for? That’s an important question to ask, because ultimately it affects your ROI and ability to attract and keep renters. If  the price is too high you will struggle to fill the property, which will also end up costing you money because you won’t be collecting rent. If you price it too low, you’ll be missing out on potential profit. There are a few key items that make up the complex issue of price when you are dealing with rentals. The desirability of the rental, length of lease required, and location of the property all come together to make up the price.

The degree to which people want to rent your property makes a big difference in how much you can ask for it. It can be difficult to be unbiased with what your own property is worth, so using a property management service, realtor or other professional can help give you good feedback. Here’s a simple list of a few main items to look at when trying to determine the attraction of your place.

  • Age/Condition of fixtures and appliances. Take a look at all the fixtures and appliances in the bathroom and kitchen. If they are new or in like-new condition you can bump the price up a little. If they are older, damaged or out of style, the price will get dragged down.
  • Layout of the home. Have a walk through the rental. Is it sectioned off into small rooms and hallways? Open throughout? Does the layout make sense for modern living or is it set up for a lifestyle gone past? Generally open, modern floor-plans tend to fetch a higher price than sectioned off ones. This is especially true for the kitchen and living areas. An open kitchen with access to the main living space will be worth a premium.
  • Storage. Homes with lots of storage, whether it’s through a garage, storage unit or closets will always get a higher rent than those without.
  • Amenities. Often amenities are only thought of in a rental community, but even a single family home has them. Homes and apartments with pools, balconies, extra windows and dedicated entertainment or workout space tend to be worth much more than those without.
  • Initial Impression. This last one is harder to quantify. It is be a combination of the landscaping, entry way, and impact of the front entrance. Homes that have that something special, whether it’s lovely landscaping, a fantastic front porch, or a beautiful front entry will leave a favorable impression on potential tenants, meaning the price point can be set a little higher.

The length of lease required for a rental can help to determine its price. Simply put, unless discussing vacation rentals, it’s better for the landlord to have a long-term lease. That means that the shorter the lease length, the more you can increase the price. The same unit that is rented with an annual lease at $1000 a month could get $1300 if the lease is only for 3 months. It’s important to consider the potential pitfalls of short-term leasing however, since you could have to do repairs between tenants, have the property sit empty, and have to go through credit and background checks more frequently when screening tenants.

The final, and often most determinate factor, in deciding a properties price is its location. Check out other rentals in the same neighborhood.  Check out realtor sites and Craigslist to see what the going rate is for a comparable home in the area. No matter how beautiful your home is, if the area only supports rental prices of a certain amount, you are likely not to get a whole lot more than that for your place. Also pay close attention to its location in reference to transportation, shopping, dining and entertainment. People will often pay a premium for homes close to main areas of these attractions.

Can You Charge a Potential Tenant for Their Credit Check?


Renting out your property to new people can be somewhat unnerving. While you want them to enjoy the property, you want to be sure they’re going to take care of it like you would. Not only that, but you need to trust your new tenant will pay their rent in full and on time every month. Most landlords or property management companies choose to run a credit check on new tenants to ensure they’re dealing with a legitimate prospect for a property.

After all, this is a property you own with the intention of turning a profit, and the repercussions for choosing a tenant on sight alone can be serious. But you don’t want to alienate real tenants by charging them too much in fees before even moving in. It’s important to be honest about running a credit check, but it’s often more difficult to justify slapping a new tenant with a hefty credit check fee. Here are some tips to how best to deal with the issue of charging tenants for their own credit checks.

Be up front about your decision
The most important thing to do when choosing to charge a credit check to a new tenant is to be up front about it. If you have chosen to charge the full price of the credit check to that tenant, you need to make them aware of this before they agree to rent the property. Nobody likes nasty hidden fees, and it can be worth a few hundred dollars to keep them content when renting your property.

Offer perks and other ‘discounts’ as a sweetener
If you feel like a prospective tenant could be lost by charging them the full amount, try offering discounts on other aspects of the rent. Offer to take it as part of their deposit, and lower the deposit to a suitable alternative. A compromise could result in your property being inhabited a month earlier than if you refuse to budge on the fees, meaning you would save money in the long run.

Include it in the total First month’s rent
Many landlords choose to include fees for moving in, performing a credit check and taking a deposit as one. Compiling them all into one payment can help both tenant and landlord keep track, but giving them such a large fee, even if it is the only payment, can be off-putting to unsure tenants. It’s often better to break down the fees and explain each of them to your potential tenants.

Use Simply Residential Property Management
If you don’t like the hassle of the moving process, and aren’t sure about credit checks, deposits and moving fees, we at Simply Residential Property Management are here to make your life easier. We perform our own credit checks, criminal checks and verify income/employment to make sure we get the best of renters in your property.

Credit checks are an important aspect of the renting process. Don’t take a risk when it comes to your own property.