Good winter maintenance program benefits everyone
Owners of investment properties are urged to carry out thorough maintenance of their properties through every season, but a set in winter can bring with it particular issues.
It’s not too late to attend to matters now.
Property owners need to check their properties for damage and undertake any repairs and maintenance before small things become serious issues as weather patterns change.
Inaction may cost landlords more money if serious repairs need to be carried out with urgency in winter, and they may face a lengthy wait for trades people.
A common complaint from tenants is the time it takes to get problems fixed.
Inaction may also result in the landlords losing a good tenant at the end of the lease, leaving them with the expense and loss of income associated with finding a replacement.
Landlords should consider:
- Cleaning the gutters and repairing any damaged areas.
- Checking the roof for loose or broken tiles, broken ridge capping or loose flashing. It may be nice to watch the rain pouring down outside during a winter storm, but the last thing a tenant wants to see is water dripping off the ceiling.
- Trimming any overgrown or overhanging branches and check trees for stability, as fallen trees are a common cause of storm damage.
- Securely anchoring garden sheds and make sure fences are stable.
- Securing any awnings and shade cloth.
- Installing a surge protector with an automatic cut out facility. It can prevent electrical damage if lightning strikes during an electrical storm and help keep tenants safe.
As the weather cools down, tenants will be making greater use of heating appliances.
Landlords should also make sure that all chimneys and flues are clear if there are wood fires or stoves in the property. Smoke alarms should also be installed in case of fire.
An investment property is a major financial investment, which needs to be well maintained so that it will continue to provide income. A little effort now will make sure that changing weather patterns do not catch you unawares and out-of-pocket later.
It is also a very good idea to make sure that all insurance policies are fully paid, up-to-date and provide adequate protection.
Your property investment manager can provide information on your insurance options.