Drywall is a building material made of a flat white board that is used inside homes as a substitute for wood or concrete walls. Also known as plasterboard, sheetrock, or gypsum board, they are used in most buildings because they are inexpensive and create a great finish.
The problem with drywall is that it gets damaged more easily than wood or concrete and needs more care than these other types of building materials. Drywall in a rental property is exposed to more risk of damage because renters may not take as much care of the walls as the owner.
Common drywall issues landlords encounter in their rentals are:
- Scuffs and marks: The drywall may get damaged by tenants not being careful when they move stuff around the home. The items could brush against the walls and leave marks. Furniture may be placed too close to walls, causing damage to the drywall.
- Holes: Holes in drywall are quite common and the most common cause is the impact of a door handle or knob on the wall, due to the absence of a door stopper. Holes may also be caused by accidents; such as when a tenant slips and falls on the wall.
- Water damage: Another major source of drywall damage is water from damaged plumbing or a leaking roof. Water is highly damaging to drywall because unlike other types of damage, it is invasive and can spread beyond the origin of the leak.
What to do about damaged drywall in a rental property
As the owner of a rental property, when the drywall in your rental home is damaged, there are three ways you can fix it:
- You can let the tenant do it if the tenant is responsible for the damage
- You can do it yourself, using a DIY approach
- Or you can call a drywall repair specialist
While most landlords will not let tenants do drywall repairs, many property owners will choose to fix the damage by themselves. This is because the tons of DIY videos on the subject of drywall repair make it look like something anyone with minimal abilities can do.
But here are the problems with anyone, other than a drywall repair specialist, trying to fix damaged drywall:
- Firstly, it takes a lot of skill (training and experience) to repair a hole or dent in drywall, so that it is not noticeable.
- Drywall repairs done by someone who is not a licensed contractor may not be done up to code and this can interfere with the rental business
- After the hole or dent in the wall has been fixed, the wall has to be painted. This can be a problem because “touch up” paint is hard to match the original paint, even when tinted.
The sum of these is that the overall appeal of the home is diminished and the rental becomes less attractive to future renters. Properly done, drywall repair must return a wall to the exact way it was before the damage happened. Also, the repair job should not have to be done a second time.
The best way to ensure drywall repair is done to the highest standard is to have a drywall repair specialist fix it. Choosing a drywall repair specialist ensures landlords don’t spend twice on the same problem. But there are other benefits to using a drywall repair specialist.
Why you need a drywall repair specialist for your rental
Two of the most important factors landlords consider when making decisions about a rental are time and money. Property owners want to reduce the vacancy periods for their homes and they also want to maximize profits by saving costs and improving income.
A drywall repair specialist saves landlords’ time and helps them make money because:
They do a thorough job
When doing drywall repair, DIYers mostly focus on the actual repair. The critical aspect of drywall repair that non-professionals don’t know about and cannot do is damage assessment. Damage assessment tells you the type of fix to apply and the scope of the repair needed. It ensures that the fixed wall doesn’t fall apart later. Damage assessment maximizes job quality while minimizing long-term costs.
They save landlords money
Landlords who repair their drywall by themselves expose themselves to the risk of losing money when the wall becomes a bigger problem that costs more money to fix. Either this or an imperfectly repaired wall, even after being painted over, causes the rental to lose quality tenants. Or the landlord is forced to spend money on tools and supplies that they will not eventually need.
They save landlords time
A drywall repair expert has the training, tools, and experience to deal with all facets of drywall repair. They know the right materials to use and how to deal with emergencies that happen during the repair. Conversely, landlords need time to study a problem and learn the best way to fix it. The time landlords spend on the problem will cost them in missed opportunities.
Given that a rental is a business, the best way to approach issues with it is to apply only the most professional solutions. That is what a drywall repair specialist is.