Preventative Maintenance is the Key to Saving Thousands

Preventative Maintenance is the Key to Saving Thousands

Preventative maintenance for rental properties isn't always as straightforward as taking care of your own home. This kind of maintenance is easily missed in rental properties because landlords aren't living in their rentals day-in and day-out. This means it’s much easier to miss essential maintenance tasks.

But if you skip these tasks they’ll start to snowball and eventually lead to expensive repairs and unhappy residents. That’s why we strongly recommend that landlords stay on top of preventative maintenance tasks in their properties. If you can stay proactive, you’ll increase the odds that your residents remain happy, your property remains profitable, and you save thousands of dollars down the line.

In this article, we’ll cover exactly how to plan for preventative maintenance tasks and which key areas to focus on throughout a rental property. Let’s get started!

Planning for Preventative Maintenance

The first step in a successful preventative maintenance plan is determining when to conduct the work.

Ideally, you’ll be able to perform these tasks during "the turn"—the period between one resident moving out and another moving in. This period is perfect because contractors and specialists access the property without tedious scheduling conflicts and disruptions to your residents’ lives.

If you can’t schedule the work during this time, you’ll want to schedule specific projects by coordinating closely with your residents. Remember, always communicate clearly and try for minimal inconvenience while getting the work done.

Now, let’s look at closer some of the key areas to focus on when evaluating your rental property for preventative maintenance projects:

Exterior Preventative Maintenance

Preventative Maintenance is the Key to Saving Thousands

The exterior of your rental property is the first line of defense against the elements. That’s why keeping it well-maintained is critical in preventing significant issues down the line.

Here are some key areas to focus on:

  1. Exterior Paint and Caulk: Check for cracking or peeling paint and brittle or cracked caulk. These issues can allow moisture to penetrate the walls, leading to water damage, mold, and structural problems.
  2. Roof Inspection: Inspect the roof for any loose, peeling, or missing tiles. Replacing a few damaged tiles is far more cost-effective than dealing with a complete roof replacement. Regular roof maintenance can also prevent leaks and other issues that could damage the interior of the property.
  3. Gutters and Downspouts: Ensure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and functioning properly. Clogged gutters can cause water to overflow, potentially damaging the roof, siding, and foundation of the property.
  4. Landscaping and Drainage: Trim back any overgrown trees or bushes that could damage the property or block gutters. Check the drainage around the property to ensure water is being directed away from the foundation.

By maintaining the exterior of your property, it will be safeguarded against more extensive damage in the future, saving you lots of money down the line. And a bonus? It can also increase the home’s curb appeal, if you’re still searching for the perfect residents!

Interior Preventative Maintenance

The interior of your rental property also requires regular maintenance to prevent issues from ramping up and eventually turning into costly headaches.

Some key areas to focus on include:

  1. Paint and Caulk: Inspect the paint and caulk in high-moisture areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. These materials can deteriorate quickly in these environments, leading to water damage and mold growth. Repainting and re-caulking these areas as needed will help maintain the property’s condition.
  2. Plumbing: Check for leaks in faucets, toilets, and under sinks. Even small leaks can lead to significant water damage and higher utility bills. Ensuring plumbing fixtures are in good working order can help prevent these issues.
  3. Electrical Systems: Test all electrical outlets and light switches to ensure they’re functioning properly. Look for any exposed wiring or other potential hazards that could pose a safety risk to your residents.
  4. Safety Devices: Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are working correctly. Replace batteries as needed and ensure that all safety devices are up to date.

By paying close attention to interiors, you can prevent minor issues from becoming major problems. This can help ensure a safe and comfortable space for your residents while also protecting your oh-so-important investment.

HVAC Preventative Maintenance

The HVAC system is one of the most critical components of your rental property. Proper maintenance can prolong its lifespan, improve efficiency, and help maintain the comfort and health of your residents.

Some key tasks to maintain your HVAC system include:

  1. Air Filters: Regularly check and replace air filters. Dirty filters can reduce the efficiency of the HVAC system, leading to higher energy costs and increased wear and tear on the equipment.
  2. System Inspection: Have a professional (hint, hint) inspect the HVAC system annually to identify any potential issues. This inspection should include checking the furnace, air conditioner, and ductwork to ensure everything is functioning correctly.
  3. Vents and Ducts: Ensure that vents are clear of obstructions and that air is flowing properly throughout the property. Clean out dryer vents to prevent clogs, which can pose a fire hazard.

It’s also important to communicate with your residents about ongoing HVAC maintenance tasks to ensure the whole system stays in good shape. Whether you plan to hire a professional property manager to handle HVAC and maintenance issues, are equipped to address these projects yourself, or expect residents to handle some of the work, you’ll need to communicate your expectations upfront and often. This way, you can ensure the ongoing well-being of your property and protect your investment for years to come!

Professional Property Management

Managing rental properties, especially from out of state or on a part-time basis, can be challenging. If you’re struggling to keep up with preventative maintenance, consider hiring a professional property management company. Companies like Evernest can handle all of your maintenance needs, ensuring your property remains in excellent condition and your residents are happy in the long term.

Final Thoughts: Preventative Maintenance Pays

Preventative maintenance is key to saving thousands and extending the life of your rental property. By staying proactive and addressing maintenance tasks regularly, you can prevent minor issues from becoming major headaches.

Whether it's the exterior, interior, or HVAC system, each component of your property needs attention and care to maintain its value and provide a comfortable living environment for your residents.

If managing these tasks seems overwhelming, especially if you're located out of state or managing properties part-time, don't hesitate to hire a professional property management company, like Evernest. We can take care of all your maintenance needs, so you can focus on anything and everything else.

Find the Evernest team in your local area and get started today!