One of the best reasons to work with a professional property management team is to leverage their maintenance resources.
Maintaining a rental property over time is difficult. It can be expensive. When you have a reliable network of vendors and contractors and a close eye on preventative maintenance, you’ll find you’re able to save money and protect the condition of your investment.
We perform routine property maintenance at all the homes we manage because we want to keep your property valuable over the long term.
In today’s blog, we’re talking about why this maintenance is important to ensure longevity and what you can expect from some of our routine maintenance plans.
Why Does Routine Property Maintenance Matter?
We want your property to remain profitable for the long term. Investors who buy and hold property have the best chance of making a lot of money on that asset. Your home is going to increase in value each year, and its condition has to keep up.
Even if you’re planning to sell it in a year or two, you want to make sure it’s in the best possible condition. You’ll earn more money when you do sell, and the higher property value will provide more equity and profit.
There is another purpose to routine home maintenance, and that’s ultimately to prevent expensive surprise maintenance. Those unexpected repairs are always more expensive, time-consuming, and frustrating than the routine and preventative repairs that you can plan for.
Checking up on the condition of your property cannot be a one-time thing. Good maintenance requires continuous inspections and service when it comes to the property’s foundation and exterior as well as the appliances, heating and cooling systems, plumbing, security, and electrical functions.
Let’s not forget that this is Florida, and there are seasonal maintenance issues at play as well. You want to be prepared for hurricane season. You need to understand the effects of extreme heat and constant sun exposure on your property.
Seasonal, routine, and preventative maintenance will also help prevent expensive parts of your property from breaking. You will save money and keep your home in good condition.
Here is a quick look at why it’s so important for us to protect your property with routine maintenance:
- You save money in the short term and the long term. Think about what you’ll pay for a new roof. Depending on your property, you could be spending up to or even more than $10,000. But, if you have that roof inspected annually, you’ll not be surprised when the roof has to be replaced. And, you’ll be able to make some preventative repairs to extend the lifespan of the expensive roof. Routine home maintenance allows you to fix small problems before they become large and expensive problems.
- Tenant retention increases. When we focus on consistent and routine repairs, your tenants are happier in their homes. Responsive maintenance shows them that we care about their quality of life and their comfort. This will lead them to stay in place for longer, which reduces your risk of vacancy and turnover costs.
- Utility costs go down. When you’re having an HVAC tech check your air conditioning unit once or twice a year, your unit will run more efficiently and reliably. You use less electricity, which means tenants have lower energy bills and better air quality inside their home. That leads to tenant satisfaction as well.
- Well-maintained homes are worth more. Routine home maintenance will drive up what you’re able to charge in rents. That’s more consistent income on a monthly basis and it also boosts the value of your asset.
- Longevity. With routine property maintenance, your systems and appliances last longer. Think about your dishwashers, refrigerators, and washing machines. Think about your water heater and your landscaping. The wear and tear that these parts of your home take on with tenants living in your property can be extreme. But, when you are servicing and inspecting these parts of your property on a regular basis, you can easily extend the life of those appliances and all the expensive equipment that comes with your property. Minor efforts like vacuuming your fridge coils and your dryer vents will save you from unexpected disasters and total replacements.
Another benefit to our routine maintenance plans? We keep your rental property safe, especially when it’s vacant. An empty property often looks like an opportunity to criminals, thieves, and vandals. When there’s no one living there, you could have an undetected leak or electrical issue. Our routine maintenance plans ensure there are eyes on your property every so often, even if the home is vacant.
How We Implement Routine Rental Property Maintenance Plans
You hire a property management team like ours to keep up with all the routine maintenance that’s needed. Typically, the ongoing inspections and services will depend on your home. Every property is unique, and the maintenance you need will depend on your property’s age and existing condition. But, there are some things that we do for nearly every property we manage.
It looks like this:
- We start with a checklist. This is especially helpful during move-in and move-out inspections. We also conduct an annual maintenance inspection while tenants are in place. The tenants we work with know to expect this; it’s in the lease agreement and we’re there specifically to look for any routine maintenance issues that may need attention.
- We partner with tenants to maintain your property. Maintaining a property is a shared responsibility. Thanks to our great communication and tenant relationships, our residents understand the expectations we have for how they will take care of the home. They understand the importance of reporting maintenance issues right away. They change air filters and light bulbs. They prevent damage and follow the terms of their lease agreement. All of this helps in the ongoing maintenance of your investment.
- We have a strong network of licensed and insured vendors and contractors. With our preferred vendor list, we know that emergencies get an immediate response. We have service contracts in place with HVAC techs, plumbers, and other professionals to ensure we get the best service and the most affordable rates.
Routine maintenance has to be part of your overall investment strategy. It contributes to better returns, higher tenant retention, and a more profitable rental property.
Making Responsive Repairs
To be responsive with repairs, we have to know about those that are needed. So, we use our routine maintenance inspections to make a list of what needs to be done. And, as we said, we work with tenants to ensure they know to make repair requests right away.
To keep costs down and prevent larger problems, we take action as quickly as we can when even a simple repair is needed. Good tenants will always expect a well-maintained property that’s safe, habitable, and comfortable. When they sign a lease agreement and pay rent every month, they expect their rental home will be functional.
Responding with a sense of urgency will contribute to the longevity of your property and the systems within it. We constantly evaluate our process for managing tenant maintenance requests. We want to document every problem, figure out the most cost-effective solution right now, and ensure that we’re taking the steps that will ensure this problem does not happen again. If something should be replaced rather than repaired, we make that decision as well.
We’re thinking about long-term investment goals as well as short-term needs.
Emergencies will occur, even if your property is in excellent condition. When there’s an emergency, we’re prepared, and that’s due in part to our responsive routine repairs. We know who to call, we know which actions have to be taken first, and we minimize the effects and costs of what could have been a disaster.
Preventative Maintenance Protects Florida Homes
Preventative maintenance is perhaps the best tool we have in ensuring longevity for your investment property and the systems inside of it.
Our attention to preventative maintenance also reduces your general repair costs. It cuts down on the number of emergency repairs and replacements you’re required to make. Preventative maintenance should always be routine, whether we’re talking about the home you live in yourself or the property you’re renting out to tenants.
We set up a preventative maintenance schedule seasonally to make sure the following things are given the attention they need:
- We test smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors
- We schedule inspections and service calls for your HVAC unit
- We have the roof inspected, as well as any chimneys or fireplaces
- We flush the water heater and any outdoor irrigation systems
- We keep up with pest control
- We clear gutters
- We check for water, gas, and sewer leaks
This type of proactive maintenance requires an investment of time and resources, but it is well worth the outcome: more money saved and a property that’s in great condition for the long term.
There’s also climate to consider when we’re talking about Florida. The heat we experience here puts an extra strain on properties in our area, and so does the tropical rain and wind we often experience in the summer months. We’re always thinking about weather when deciding how and when to make repairs and maintain your home.
If you have questions about the type of routine maintenance that would best benefit your property, contact us at Anchor Down Real Estate & Rentals. We’d be happy to make some recommendations.