Every property owner knows that owning a home requires maintenance. Some things you can do yourself, while others are better completed by hired professionals. Whether you are currently living in your property or if you are renting out a unit to tenants, being on top of the different maintenance required during each season and knowing who you can depend on to complete each task is important to protect your investment.
“Some managers forget to think ahead to the next season early enough, so tenants are comfortable when weather changes start to turn cooler,” says the Operations Director at Specialized. “Getting the furnace ready before it turns cool means your tenants don’t have to wait to be comfortable in their homes when the weather surprises us with change.”
The more organized and proactive you are with maintenance, the more time and money you’ll save avoiding the need for repairs in the future and the happier your tenants will be. If you’re not sure whether you have the time or ability to complete all the maintenance tasks required each season, consider hiring a property management company. Specialized Fort Worth residential property management company has a team of experts that know what to do each season and the most efficient and effective ways to do it. We’ve included tips on getting your property rent ready and compiled a list of items to look out for each Fall and Winter and how to stay ahead of costly mistakes. Whether you want to do it yourself or have our team take care of it, you’ll want to be very familiar with the following maintenance tips.
Getting Your Property Rent Ready
Before worrying about regular maintenance, make sure that your property is rent ready for potential tenants. Without being presentable and up to code, your property won’t have the chance to be maintained until it’s fixed. Have someone come out to do an evaluation and let you know what needs to be done. Fort Worth residential property management can perform an honest and proper evaluation for you and then help fix any problems. Take the time now to remodel, update, and improve the curb appeal and the value of your property will increase. This may allow you to charge higher for rent and attract tenants who are well qualified. Once your home is functional and beautiful, it will be much easier to keep up with regular maintenance each season and even lower maintenance costs.
Check HVAC Units and Clean Fireplace
Because of the constantly changing weather in Texas, it’s important to keep both your heater and AC unit in good working conditions. Clean or replace the AC ventilation system filters often and get rid of any fan and airway buildup. Make sure to bleed any air from hot water radiator systems and clean the dust off the fan blades as well. We also suggest you check humidity levels and execute any needed maintenance on humidifiers or dehumidifiers. Fall is a great time to cover outdoor AC units and do a chimney sweep on your fireplace as well. Rather than waiting on you while being cold, thinking ahead during the fall will ensure that your tenants will be comfortable all winter long.
About once a season or twice a year, it’s a good idea to hire a licensed inspector to walk around your property and inspect everything (both inside and outside) and ensure that it’s as it should be and that lease compliance is in order. At Specialized Fort Worth residential property management, our trusted experts perform property inspections for you and check for the following things:
- Loose or buckling carpet
- Unstable stair railings
- Hot electrical outlets
- Fully charged fire extinguishers
- Potential fire hazards
- Smoke detector and Co2 detector with working batteries
- Working shut off valves for gas and water
This inspection will alert you of items you may not be watching out for on your own. It’s important to hire someone who is honest and thorough in their inspection and will help you save money, rather than cost you more in the long run. Once you know what needs to be fixed, you can then utilize trustworthy maintenance companies or Specialized Fort Worth’s team of trusted repair companies to quickly and properly perform the correct maintenance.
Fall is the best time to landscape your property’s lawn by fertilizing it, trimming trees and bushes, and removing any plants or roots that affect the foundation, siding or brick of your property. Tidying up leaves in the fall and making sure that any clutter is cleaned up off of your lawn before winter hits will keep your property looking beautiful while avoiding potential hazards. Our team can give you tips on how to increase your curb appeal in a way that doesn’t require an excessive amount of maintenance when you call our Specialized Fort Worth residential property management company.
Spring isn’t the only time you can declutter and clean. With any change of the seasons, it can be a good time to get a fresh start and do a deep clean. Vacuum under appliances while you’re vacuuming out vents, deep clean bathrooms, carpets, and rugs. Clean your garbage disposal by running ice through it one time, and following up with hot water and baking soda. Store summer items like water toys, garden tools and your hose in the garage for the winter months. Clean windows and blinds and take the time to deep clean areas that normally don’t get any attention like baseboards and beneath couch cushions. Anything that needs attention should be cleaned in the fall so that you don’t have to worry about it in the winter, when you’re less motivated to get outside and preoccupied with holiday celebrations and family get-togethers.
Indoor Pipes and Outdoor Faucets
Fort Worth doesn’t often get below freezing, but when it does, it can wreak havoc on your indoor pipes. Avoid your pipes freezing by wrapping them in heat cables or flexible tubular pipe insulation. Heat cables use a low electrical current to warm the lines, preventing freezing from taking place. Do this with pipes underneath sinks as well as around your attic. Exposed plastic or copper pipes need to be wrapped as well. If your home has a pier and beam foundation, make sure to insulate short runs of pipe that might be exposed. To protect outdoor water faucets, purchase hard faucet covers to place over the spigots.
If your property doesn’t have anyone living in it and you’re not in town, call your Fort Worth residential property management company and have them make sure it’s protected for the winter. It’s best to turn the heat on just above freezing to prevent any damage. Try opening cabinets as well to let warm air into areas where pipes are located. Barely turning on the faucets to let a tiny trickle of water flow through the pipes is a great way to avoid them freezing as well.
Change Furnace Filters Monthly
Another tip for winter is to make sure that the filters in your heating unit are working and your vents are clean. After an entire summer of using the AC to keep cool, your heater may not be able to function properly unless it’s cleaned out. During the winter, with the constant use of the heater, you’ll want to change out your furnace filters monthly. Also keep an eye on sink drains to make sure they are clear of debris and draining properly.
Though you’re the property owner, your tenants have maintenance responsibilities as well. Knowing what you’re in charge of vs. what they’re in charge of will save you the headache of taking on unnecessary work. Make sure that when they sign their lease, they know what they’re responsible for and then check in every season to see that they’re doing it. Fort Worth residential property management at Specialized Fort Worth can communicate with tenants for you in a clear and professional way so that you don’t have to worry about a strained relationship and unnecessary drama.
- Report and take care of safety hazards like bulky carpets or loose hand railings
- Make sure electrical sockets are not warm to the touch
- Keep fire extinguishers properly charged
- Install fresh batteries in any alarms in the home
- Be familiar with household safety and emergency plans, knowing where gas and water shut off valves are located
- Clean/replace filters and vents routinely
- Ensure all doors and windows function properly
- Clean drains and traps for correct drainage
- Keep outdoor are clean and tidy
Fort Worth Residential Property Management
When you invest in any property, taking good care of it pays off in the long run. It will keep your property looking and working great, allowing tenants to have consistently positive experiences and in turn providing you with consistent income. Part of making sure your property is taken care of correctly is hiring the right property management company. Specialized Fort Worth residential property management with its 98% customer satisfaction rating and over 30 years of experience and has seen it all, including the occasional Texas snowfall. We allow you to manage your business while we keep your unit well maintained, retain curbside appeal, and communicate with tenants about their maintenance responsibilities.
“Property inspections and communication with tenants is always a good idea for being proactive with your property management responsibilities,” advises the Operations Director at Specialized Fort Worth.
Contact us today to learn more about how Specialized Fort Worth property management can take the best care of your property.