There are keys and then there are KEYS!!! One of the MOST IMPORTANT things a new property manager learns is the VALUE and the MEANING of keys.
The First thing we learn is that keys equal possession. Once the paperwork is complete and monies are paid, the new residents get keys to the property they have just rented. Hooray!
The Second thing property managers learn is to NEVER give the only/or all of the keys to the residents. Keeping a file set or 3 is ALWAYS good idea.
The Third thing a property manager learns to do is to put a hidden keybox on the property. I have then on porch or deck posts for use if residents lock themselves out of the property or emergency entry is necessary without a trip to my office.
One of the BIGGEST and most COSTLY mistakes property owners do is to give all of their keys to their new tenants and not retain a set. While many homeowners operate with 2 or 3 sets of house keys, having MORE keys for various different reasons is an unknown pitfall when they become a landlord. When they give all of their property keys to their tenants and their tenants turn surly, they have a legal situation if they need access.
Having extra keys to the property AND a NO ALTERATION clause in the lease prevents a lot of headaches and mi$take$ during the tenancy.
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM * GIBSON MANAGEMENT GROUP, Ltd.
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