Nobody likes to deal with property maintenance – it’s costly, time-consuming, and can get frustrating. But, it’s all a part of owning an investment property, and if you don’t have a property management company overseeing this for you, then it’s something that you need to stay on top of, or it can really cost you later on down the road.
One big mistake we see landlords make is not checking the property periodically for issues. One small, unreported or unnoticed leak can end up costing a lot of money down the road. Many times it’s more cost effective to fix something right away than to keep deferring it until it’s too late.
But why not just wait for the tenant to tell you there’s a problem? Tenants avoid submitting maintenance requests for a number of reasons.
- They’re afraid they’ll be blamed for the issue.
- Maintenance calls mean they’ll have to take off work to meet the vendor.
- They don’t notice the issue.
- They don’t know it’s an issue.
- They don’t care.
What kind of stuff should you be checking? It’s important to make sure certain items in the property are being taken care of.
- Check the gutters. Clogged or damaged gutters can cause major damage, and it’s important to make sure they’re kept clean and in working order.
- Furnace filters. Dirty filters can cause major damage to the HVAC.
- Check for leaks. Look for moisture under sinks, toilets, the basement, the ceilings, and check the sump pump.
- Safety Issues. Make sure there are no loose handrails, tripping hazards, rotting wood, etc.
- Tenant upkeep. Ensure the tenant is taking care of the property, there are no unauthorized occupants, or unauthorized pets.
If you don’t have a property management company periodically checking your property, then you need to make sure you are doing this once or twice a year. Preventative maintenance detects minor problems before they become larger problems.