Rental Inspection Checklist Template

Free Rental Inspection Checklist Template

What Is a Rental Inspection Checklist?

A rental inspection checklist is a comprehensive document that details the condition of a rental property. This checklist is essential for ensuring that the rental property meets specific standards before a tenant moves in, during their occupancy, and after they move out. The checklist covers various aspects of the property, such as the interior, exterior, mechanical and electrical systems, and structure. The primary purpose of the rental inspection checklist is to ensure that both the landlord and tenant agree on the condition of the rental property before the tenant moves in. It plays a crucial role in protecting the rights of both parties, maintaining the property’s condition, ensuring compliance with laws and regulations, and reducing conflicts between landlords and tenants. 

How to Use a Rental Inspection Checklist?

Using a rental inspection checklist effectively involves several key steps that landlords should follow. These steps include conducting a thorough inspection of the rental property, documenting any issues or damages found, discussing the findings with the tenant, and signing and dating the checklist. Additionally, landlords should make sure to schedule regular follow-up inspections using the rental inspection checklist to ensure that the property is well-maintained and any issues are addressed promptly.

  • Schedule an inspection 

Landlords should reach out to tenants and agree on a convenient time for the inspection. The inspection should be scheduled before the tenant moves in, during their occupancy, and after they move out. Landlords should communicate with the tenant regarding the inspection’s purpose and what items will be included in the checklist. It is recommended that landlords provide at least 24 hours’ notice before the inspection to give the tenant enough time to prepare. 

  • Conduct the inspection

The landlord should walk through the rental property with the tenant and carefully check each item on the checklist. During the inspection, landlords should pay close attention to detail and document any damages or issues found, including taking photographs or videos. It is also essential to ensure that the mechanical and electrical systems are functioning correctly. It is a good idea to involve the tenant during the inspection and encourage them to report any issues or damages they notice. 

  • Discuss the findings

After conducting the inspection, the landlord should review the checklist with the tenant and make sure they understand the rental property’s condition. It is a good idea to discuss each item on the checklist and point out any damages or issues discovered during the inspection. If there are any problems, the landlord should explain how they will be resolved and provide a timeline for repairs. During the conversation, it is essential to be clear and straightforward and encourage the tenant to ask questions or give feedback. It is also advisable to document the discussion and any agreements made in writing to prevent any future misunderstandings. 

  • Sign and date the checklist

After the inspection is finished, both the landlord and tenant should sign and date the checklist to confirm their agreement on the rental property’s condition. This signature indicates that both parties have reviewed the checklist and agree on the documented condition of the property. It is recommended that each party keeps a copy of the signed checklist for future reference. By signing and dating the rental inspection checklist, landlords can protect their investment and avoid potential disputes with tenants. 

  • Use the checklist for future inspections

To use the rental inspection checklist for future inspections, landlords should carefully review the previous inspection checklist and take note of any items that require further attention. During the next inspection, landlords should revisit these items and document any changes or updates. It is important to be thorough and record any new damages or issues that have arisen since the previous inspection.

  • Promptly address any issues

Addressing any issues found during a rental inspection promptly is essential to maintaining a positive landlord-tenant relationship and preventing potential conflicts. Promptly addressing any issues shows that landlords prioritize their tenants’ needs and are dedicated to keeping their rental property in good condition. Delaying repairs or maintenance can result in more significant damage and inconvenience for the tenant, leading to dissatisfaction and possibly legal action. 

What Are the Four Types of Inspections?

There are several types of rental property inspections that are commonly conducted to assess the condition of a rental property. Here are some of the most common types:

  • Move-in inspection

The move-in inspection is a vital process that takes place when a tenant moves into a rental property. It involves a thorough inspection of the property’s condition to identify any pre-existing damages or issues. During the inspection, the landlord and tenant conduct a comprehensive walkthrough of the rental property and carefully document any damages, stains, or other issues they come across. The move-in inspection serves as an essential record of the rental property’s condition at the beginning of the tenancy and protects the interests of both the tenant and landlord. The landlord can use the inspection report to identify any necessary repairs or cleaning that need to be done before the tenant moves in, while the tenant can use the report to avoid being held responsible for any damages that were already present in the rental property. 

  • Move-out inspection

A move-out inspection occurs when a tenant is preparing to vacate a rental property. The landlord or property manager conducts a meticulous inspection of the property’s condition to identify any damages or issues that may have occurred during the tenant’s occupancy. Typically, the move-out inspection takes place after the tenant has removed all personal belongings and completed the cleaning process. Any discrepancies or new damages are meticulously documented, and the tenant may be held accountable for any necessary repairs or cleaning required to restore the property to its original condition. 

  • Routine inspection

A routine inspection is a scheduled evaluation of a rental property conducted by a landlord or property manager to assess its condition. Typically, routine inspections are performed every six months to a year, but the frequency may vary depending on the lease agreement and state laws. The primary objective of a routine inspection is to identify any necessary repairs, maintenance, or safety issues that need to be addressed promptly. The tenant is typically given advance notice of the inspection and may be present during the walkthrough. 

  • Drive-by inspection

A drive-by inspection is an exterior evaluation of a rental property conducted by a landlord or property manager. Typically, the inspection is carried out while the inspector is driving by the property, with the aim of identifying any visible signs of damage or maintenance issues. Although not as thorough as a full interior inspection, a drive-by inspection can still be valuable in identifying issues that require attention. During a drive-by inspection, the inspector may observe the property’s exterior for signs of overgrown landscaping, missing or damaged siding, or broken windows. The inspection may also involve checking for any signs of potential lease violations, such as unauthorized pets or additional occupants.

What to Include In a Rental Inspection Checklist?

Having a comprehensive inspection checklist is essential for landlords, and it’s important to know what items to include on the list. A well-crafted Rental Inspection Checklist should be detailed, clear, and easy to understand for both the landlord and the tenant. It can help landlords maintain their rental properties’ condition, ensure their tenants’ safety, and protect their investment.

To create an effective rental inspection checklist, we suggest including the following information, keeping in mind that it can be adjusted to meet your business’s specific requirements:


  • Lawn and garden
  • Sidewalks and driveways
  • Exterior walls
  • Windows and doors
  • Roofing, gutters, and downspouts


  • Walls, ceilings, and floors
  • Doors, locks, and hardware
  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Electrical outlets and switches
  • Plumbing fixtures and appliances
  • Heating and cooling system
  • Carpets and flooring
  • Blinds and curtains


  • Cabinets and countertops
  • Sink and faucet
  • Range and oven
  • Refrigerator
  • Dishwasher
  • Garbage disposal


  • Sink and faucet
  • Toilet
  • Bathtub or shower
  • Medicine cabinet
  • Exhaust fan

Living areas:

  • Walls, ceilings, and floors
  • Windows and doors
  • Carpets and flooring
  • Blinds and curtains

Other areas:

  • Laundry room
  • Garage
  • Storage areas, etc.

Safety features:

  • Smoke detectors
  • Carbon monoxide detectors
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Emergency exits


  • Any other items or features specific to the rental property that should be inspected.
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These resources are for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Landlords and Tenants are encouraged to seek specific legal advice for any of the issues as found in this blog.


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