Property maintenance is your responsibility as a landlord. It can get messy and expensive, but it’s well worth the effort. The sooner you get on top of routine maintenance issues, the better.
Tenants are less likely to seek a home elsewhere if the property is reasonably maintained. Moreover, it becomes easier to find high-value tenants and charge market-going rent (or even higher) if the property is in good condition.
Here are the essential maintenance tasks all landlords should know about.
Keep the Doors and Windows Secure
Keeping the home and windows secure could be a major responsibility depending on where your property is located. This means you must make sure that all your home security systems are working properly and without any faults.
Test the Smoke Detectors
These safety devices must be installed properly and should be tested at least once a year. As an additional measure, you can instruct the tenants to check the devices to see if they are in working order. It is a good idea to replace the batteries in a battery-operated smoke detector. You can also press the test button to see if the alarm is working properly.
Roof Maintenance 101
Roof cleaning can be a nightmare for landlords if their properties are located near tall trees with mature trees, debris, and twigs falling on their gutters, drainpipes, and roofs. But that’s not the worst of it – a poorly maintained roof makes for bad optics, especially if you are in the process of seeking tenants. If the trees prove to be a problem, hire an expert contractor to cut them down to size.
That’s why Real Capital Group are recommending that you should hire a contractor to check the roof for all types of damage, including structural damage, mold growth, and water damage. Roof damage is a big problem after a heavy rainstorm.
Prevent Pest Infestations
In the winter, pest infestation is a major concern for landlords when small animals seek shelter from the harsh outdoor weather. Look for any openings in your home’s entry points that could be providing safe passage to rodents. As an added measure, instruct your tenants to keep trash bags tightly closed otherwise they could attract pests.
Winterize Your Home
The harsh winter temperatures can cause the water inside pipes to freeze and crack. This is a major expense that will eat into your rental revenue. A good rule of thumb is to disconnect and drain any water pipes leading outside the house. Check windows and door frames for holes that could be leaking warm air outside the house and increase the energy bill for tenants.
Weather stripping is a cost-effective solution that seems to seal window frames.
Repaint the Walls
It is easy to overlook the aesthetic value of a paint overhaul. While the paint supplies aren’t cheap, they can make your home look more attractive to prospective tenants who are more likely to pay higher rent. As a safe bet, choose neutral colors, like white and cream and gray. Repainting the walls is a nice touch up that can do wonders for your long term revenue prospects.
You’ll need to regularly clean the chimney if the rental unit has a fireplace. This can be done by hiring a contractor to make inspections of the chimney at regular intervals. Doing so will greatly reduce your risk of fires and carbon monoxide poisoning.
Ventilation is Important
Don’t miss out on ventilation because it will save you from most maintenance problems caused due to water leaks and mold. You can also buy a dehumidifier to reduce the humidity levels of the entire house.
Hire a Property Manager to Take Care of Property Maintenance
Consider hiring an experienced property manager instead if all of the above sounds like too much work. While saving money is a big reason why most landlords do property maintenance themselves, the work can get hectic and tiring. It is always a better idea to hire a property manager with experience and recommendations.