Spring maintenance

Often it’s a case of out-of-sight, out-of-mind when it comes to maintenance for our property investments. It’s easy to make delays when repairs, upgrades, new appliances, painting and plumbing threaten your profitability.

However, as landlords we certainly know that failure to diligently monitor the condition of our properties can lead to costly damage over time, not to mention unhappy tenants who will potentially move out.​

The best course of action is to budget for regular repairs and systematically check the key maintenance areas that can lead to bigger problems. Spring is a great time to kick into action. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Keep all wood on the exterior of the house painted. Failure to keep these areas painted will lead to softness and deterioration of the wood, which can quickly become a costly repair.
  • Keep the gutters free of leaves and debris. Failure to do so can allow water to back up in the gutters and overflow, leading to leaks and water penetration into the house. Also, add extenders to your downspouts so that they don’t empty next to the foundation.
  • Check all windows and doors for gaps and seal them with a weather-proof sealant to prevent water penetration. Your tenants will thank you for a warmer and dryer home and the maintenance will prevent expensive moisture ingress damage. This is particularly pertinent for Canterbury houses post-earthquake.
  • Inspect trees on your property for dead or low-hanging limbs. They can be a liability if they fall and injure someone.
  • Monitor your roof for missing tiles or popped rivets, especially after an earthquake, storm, or high winds. A small leak can lead to serious problems.
  • Check for dripping taps. A dripping hot water tap can cause condensation and mould. It usually takes just a cheap washer from your hardware store to repair.
  • Plumbing fixtures. You need to weigh up whether to repair or replace these when they are faulty. If they’re more than 10-years-old, it’s often a better option to replace and avoid on-going maintenance costs.
  • Check the insulation around the hot water cylinder. Wrapping the hot water cylinder will keep it running efficiently and lower power bills for tenants, which means less tenant turnover.

Taking a little time to regularly stay on top of routine property maintenance will save you time and money in the long run.

Do you have other tips to add to the list? Let us know: email vanessa@cpia.nz.

CPIA member tip: “I understand it’s a good thing to gently wash exterior paintwork also – prolongs the life of the paint.” -Brian Hobbs.