Winter can be tough on properties. Rain, wind and humidity can wreak havoc on roofs, bathrooms and gardens.
If you have an investment property, now’s the time to get those potential issues sorted, because it’s better to spend a little on maintenance now than a lot on repairs later. With that in mind, here are six of the most important maintenance jobs to keep your home and your tenant safe and sound through winter.
1. Don't leave leaves in the gutters
The leaves of deciduous trees look beautiful in autumn, until they fall into your gutters. With plenty of rain on the way, it’s a good idea to get up on a ladder and clear your gutters before they lead to blocked downpipes. While you’re up there, check to see if the gutters are rusted and/or leaking, as this can lead to salt damp on interior and exterior walls.
2. Hit the roof
While you have the ladder out, check the roof for cracked or loose roof panels or tiles. Even a small leak can lead to a hefty repair bill if water gets into your roof and walls.
3. The heat is on
If your tenant hasn’t already cranked up the heating or picked up a load of firewood, it won’t be long. If the flue or chimney hasn’t been cleaned in a while, it’s a good idea to have it looked at before the chilly nights of winter begin. Moist wood and some types of wood can cause silt and soot build up, which can eventually cause a complete blockage. Ducted heating and reverse cycle air conditioning needs to be serviced by a professional every few years.
4. Cause for alarm
While you have access to your investment home, changing the batteries in your home’s smoke alarms is always a good idea, if your tenant hasn’t done it already. It will give you, and them, peace of mind for the next 12 months.
5. Everything mould is new again
Condensation and mould can be a real problem inside in winter. Long showers, closed windows, heaters and clothes drying inside can all be contributors. Mould can be hazardous to health so check wet areas and make sure all traces are removed and all exhaust fans are clean and working properly.
6. Branch out the garden
If your property’s trees and shrubs have gone a bit wild, keep them in check with a quick prune. Make sure paths and driveways are easy to navigate and remove large dead branches that overhang homes, outdoor living areas and play areas. Inspect and repair the fences too so that any pets and children are safe and secure.