A landlord’s essential winter checklist
Amidst all the hustle and bustle of Christmas preparation, the holiday season is really about taking a much-needed break from everyday business to spend time with loved ones.
But before enjoying some time off, landlords must make sure everything in their rental property is running as it should.
Other than avoiding hefty repair costs, investing some time into your property before Christmas means you won’t have to deal with any last-minute calls when you’re in front of the fireplace trying to enjoy your mince pie.
Here are all the essentials for landlords to check off the list before wrapping things up for Christmas and the New Year.
Frozen water pipes are a common problem over the winter months, and a build-up of leaves or debris in your gutters can prevent rainwater or snow from draining away. Internal and external water pipes should be checked and properly lagged – including any pipes in the loft. Lagging pipework is an easy DIY project which will immediately make a difference, especially in the winter. Getting this step out of the way will ensure that the heat in the hot water is not lost before it gets to where it’s needed – reducing the risk of frozen or burst pipes.
The boiler has some busy months ahead, and it’s going to be working hard over Christmas when your tenants are spending more time at home. Make sure your property’s boiler has been serviced and consider putting a service plan in place. If it’s a gas boiler, ensure the gas safety certificate is up to date.
Although having a warm property is ideal for both you and your tenants, condensation can quickly lead to dampness when the weather outside is colder. Make sure your property is well-ventilated and focus especially on airflow in the kitchen and bathrooms. You may also want to advise your tenants to keep an eye on condensation and encourage them to crack open a window or switch on the extractor fan wherever possible.
Check that all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning in accordance with current government legislation. While you’re paying a visit, it might be a good idea to give your tenants a quick brush-up on fire safety, as Christmas decorating often calls for more electronics and candles than usual.
While you’re paying a visit to the property, take some time to check over any external spaces. Make sure all security measures are working, check for peeling paint as this can indicate moisture ingress, and look out for any cracks in the driveway or paving that hard frost could exacerbate.
In the wake of Autumn, a build-up of leaves and debris is something to look out for as this can stop rainwater or snow from draining properly. Avoid potential leaks and cracked drain pipes by clearing out gutters if necessary.
Kick back and relax
Lastly, if you won’t be home over the holiday season, let your tenants know who to contact while you’re away in case of an emergency.
Once you have made sure your tenant’s Christmas won’t be compromised by a faulty property, you can finally put your feet up and rest assured that your tenants will be comfortable this season – and that you won’t be facing any eyewatering repair costs come New Year’s.
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This article was originally published by BriefYourMarket and is reproduced here with their permission.
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