For the average DIY landlord, maintenance and repair difficulties are exactly that. Difficult. From roofing to plumbing and electrical, maintaining your rental home is a truly unpredictable and dangerous field to mine alone. With no experience dealing or negotiating with contractors, you can be overcharged for repairs. And without a go-to list of insured, trustworthy contractors, who else can you call?
It’s a common concern. In fact, 8/10 property investors conduct their own home repairs. That doesn’t mean they should. The Census Bureau reported that one in every four rental property owners pays over 20 percent of their rental income to maintenance. On top of that, there’s the time you have to take off from your day job to coordinate repairs, and the pulled focus from vacations, family time, and even a good night’s rest. The reality is that handling maintenance repairs is taxing physically, emotionally, and financially.
Protect Your Tenants and Investment With Preventative Maintenance
Maybe you’re not handy and you don’t have the hours to devote to maintaining the rental home or even to learn new skills. Some of those skills might be conflict resolution to deal with irate tenants who feel entitled to a fully functional household at all times. Maybe you don’t even live close by. But there are basic safety measures you can take in the spring and fall to provide quality maintenance for your tenants and rental property:
- Check for pests. Provide tenants with safe, clean garbage disposal outside the home.
- Check for water damage. Look over toilets and faucets for any dripping or pooling. Inspect ceilings and walls for stains that could indicate leaks.
- Caulk and grout your bathroom to keep water sealed.
- Install hair catchers in drains to ward off clogs.
- Clear gutters and replace damaged shingles.
- Touch-up any cracks in the ceiling or walls.
- Flush the water heater to prevent buildup.
- Replace dirty furnace filters (this will actually need to be done once every three months).
- Check the batteries of your smoke detectors.
As an added bonus, a property that’s well-maintained encourages tenants to take care of their living space, so lead by example. You can also hire a property manager to conduct regular inspections of your rental home to ensure your tenants are keeping things ship-shape.
Take Advantage of Property Management Connections
Property managers offer the value of experienced and trusted vendors. Allowing a property manager to process maintenance requests gives you back the freedom you envisioned when you dreamed of owning a rental property. You don’t have to give up your evenings and weekends. You don’t have to endure the flooding toilet, the creepy termites, the broken HVAC, or the social oddities of entering someone’s home.
You don’t even have to worry about how quickly they’ll respond. With the urgency of tenant relationships and property damage, investors like you are usually willing to pay unfair charges all at once just to put out the fire. But property managers have a dependable, cost-efficient network of contractors on call, so you can rely on their team (and their ability to get vendor discounts).
The property manager also oversees all maintenance requests and repairs from start to finish. They organize everything and call all the shots, so there’s no chance you’ll be taken advantage of by contractors who can tell you’re an inexperienced landlord.
While you might be tempted to try to perform your own rental home maintenance because you’re afraid of huge losses, tackling faulty structures and wiring without the knowledge or experience can result in even more losses. It starts with the financial and legal liabilities resulting from improper fixes. Always put you and your tenant’s safety first. Contact Real Property Management Preferred for your home rental maintenance today.
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