Landlord Resources / Licensed & Insured Vendors - Too Expensive?
Consider this: my friend Frank needed to replace his ac unit at one of his rental houses. He knew a guy who moonlighted and was really cheap. He saved himself $300.00 and the tenants were very happy with their ice cold air. Then winter came and the gas company wouldn’t turn on the gas since the heating unit had not been properly permitted or inspected. What initially was a savings of $300.00 and happy tenants, turned into a very expensive bill and very upset residents.
Here are some things to consider when deciding to do repairs yourself or hire unlicensed and uninsured vendors:
- Your tenant leans on the balcony railing you just recently fixed and it lets go and down he falls
- The new hot water heater shorts out and scalds the child in the shower
- The GFI plug you put into the kitchen sparked and caught fire when the tenant plugged in the toaster
- The new fence you just installed fell down on the kids when they were climbing on it
- The glass that was replaced in the window wasn’t tempered or shatterproof and when the tenant tripped, they went head first through the glass
- The renters got angry when you increased their rent and turned you into the local housing authority for un-permitted repairs
- The tenants dog somehow got into the rat poison you put in the tree and died
- The house catches on fire and the smoke detectors you installed didn’t go off
- The new sewer line you and your neighbor put in over the weekend didn’t have the proper slope and all the sewage is backing into the tenant’s house
- The garage door falls on the tenant’s car because the handyman didn’t reattach the tracks properly when he installed new wheels
While all these things sound far fetched – landlords and property managers, like yourselves, have been sued for the things listed above and many more outrageous mishaps. It is important to protect yourself and your assets. Cutting corners to save a couple of dollars could cost you a lot more in the long run. Bottom line, it is never too expensive to get the job done right. Shop around and get several quotes, but always use licensed and insured vendors.