Winterizing Tips for Landlords – 1/17/2022
Over the years Texas weather has become the brunt of many jokes!
From the severe heat during the summer months to the volatility of the fall and winter, our weather is quite nonsensical and, while this lends quite a bit of humor to our lives, it can make planning quite difficult.
Here are some quick tips for winter preparation!
Prepare your tenant by sending out instructions regarding their winterizing responsibilities.
Preparing your rental property for Winter should be a joint effort between you and your tenant.
You should be sending out seasonal letters with instructions on steps the tenant should take to prepare themselves and the property that they occupy for the season.
Some good information to include in your winter tenant letter:
- Covering outdoor faucets to prevent freezing.
- Maintain a minimum temperature of 55 degrees Fahrenheit when they go on vacation. This will prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting due to the cold temperatures.
- Remind them to test all smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors and replace the batteries (unless this is a landlord responsibility in the lease agreement).
- Add any emergency contact information in the event of a maintenance emergency.
However, the onus is not entirely on your tenant (especially if you experience a vacancy during the winter months!) to maintain and prepare the property.
Do your part to keep the property safe and protect your investment.
Your tenant may have responsibilities in regards to protecting the property, but the investor has many responsibilities as well. A few of things you will want to consider are:
- Weather-proof the exterior of your property: Your home’s exterior takes the hardest beating during winter. Check the outside of your rental and make any necessary preparations for the season. You may need to seal around windows, put concrete in the cracks of your hardscaping, and check the roof for damaged shingles or potential places where ice dams might occur.
- Trim Trees and Shrubs: In the winter, ice can accumulate on dead branches and cause them to come down. This can result in damage to your roof, broken windows, and scared tenants.
- Clean the gutters: If gutters are filled with leaves and debris, snow and ice can build up, causing damages to the roof and eaves, and eventually harming walls and ceilings.
- Check chimney flues: In units with working fireplaces, it’s important to have an annual inspection by a qualified professional. Creosote buildup can cause fires.
With winter upon us, you will need to ensure your property is ready. This will mean coordinating multiple vendors, admittance to the property, and updating/educating your tenant on their duties. You will certainly have your work cut out for you!
Would you prefer to have a professional take care of your property and help you tackle the many duties of caring for your investments? Contact us today and we will tell you how we can help!