Keeping your Alexandria rental property well-maintained will ensure you’re able to rent it out for years to come, for top dollar and to the best tenants. Everyone has their own process for keeping up with repairs, preventative maintenance, and upgrades and improvements.
Even with the best of intentions, staying on schedule and giving your property the attention that it needs can be a challenge. You get busy. Your vendors aren’t available. Prices go up. It’s easy to let things slip, and that’s never good. It leads to deterioration and deferred maintenance. Worse, it frustrates your tenants and sends you into expensive turnovers and vacancies.
To help you avoid those potential pitfalls, we’ve put together some professional tips to help with maintenance. When you prioritize the routine maintenance and the preventative services at your investment property, you can benefit in several ways. For example, your property will be more attractive to potential tenants, so you’ll have an easier time renting it. You’ll earn higher rental values and you’ll find you have to pay for fewer emergency repairs. There’s a longer lifespan for the expensive systems in your property, like roofs and HVAC systems, and plumbing.
HVAC: Preventative Maintenance for the Win
Think about where you’ll spend the most money if you have to make a repair or replacement.
You’ll likely think about the HVAC system. This is where the heating, the air conditioning, and the ventilation lives in your property. When there’s a problem, it’s usually an expensive problem.
Preventative maintenance is your best resource. Hire an HVAC technician to inspect and service your system annually. This will help you maintain it and avoid those calls in the middle of summer when the air conditioning goes out.
You want to keep expensive systems like the HVAC running as efficiently and effectively as possible. Preventative maintenance can reduce repair costs. You won’t have to worry about spending thousands of dollars to replace your HVAC system too soon.
Any potential problems will be detected early, and you’ll increase the life expectancy of your system.
Make Your Plumbing a Priority
Water leaks and even slow drips in Alexandria rental properties is never a good situation. It can cause a lot of damage quickly.
Don’t ignore the small leaks. Inspect your plumbing whenever you can. If water is allowed to pool, you’re looking at the potential for rot and mold as well as water damage.
You’ll want to look under sinks during your move-in and move-out inspections and any inspections you do while a tenant is in place. In the winter, make sure you’re blowing out you sprinklers and insulating any irrigation systems you have outside. Drain your water heater every year or two and always check it for rust or wear.
Alexandria Tenants Need to Help You Maintain Your Property
As you likely understand, maintaining your investment is largely your responsibility. You will have to budget for repairs and replacements, unless the tenant causes damage.
While your responsibility is to keep the property safe, habitable, and functional, you can still set up some expectations for your tenants. You’ll want to partner with your Alexandria tenants when it comes to taking care of the home. You can expect them to report maintenance needs right away. This will avoid larger expenses and bigger problems. You can also expect your tenants to take some preventative maintenance measures, such as changing air filters routinely.
Share your expectations with tenants before they sign the lease and move into the home. Make sure your process for reporting maintenance is clear and easy. Emergencies, for example, will always require a phone call. Routine repair requests, however, are better received in writing. This gives you an opportunity to document the repair need and the actions that you take.
Partner with a Preferred List of Local Vendors and Contractors
It’s not always easy to find vendors and contractors in the moment you need them. They’re busy. They’re juggling heavy workloads. They don’t always have the help they need or the capacity to meet the needs of all their customers.
Good vendors and contractors are essential to how you maintain your property.
You can’t have a solid maintenance plan without a great team of professionals who will take care of the work that your property will ultimately need. Your handyman can likely take care of minor issues, but when it comes to specialized work like plumbing, electricity, roofing, and HVAC maintenance, you want to establish relationships with licensed and insured professionals.
Here is the most important maintenance tip we can give you: Develop these relationships before you need them. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself looking for a plumber in the middle of the night and you’ll have trouble finding one.
Another good maintenance tip: Listen to the advice and recommendations you receive when it comes to caring for your property.
Finally, make sure all of the vendors you work with are licensed and insured to prevent additional risk and liability.
Upgrade and Improve Your Investment Property When You Can
Sometimes, maintenance requests are unpleasant. They’re are unwelcome reminder that your rental property requires ongoing care.
Smart investors see these maintenance requests as an opportunity.
For example, if a tenant calls to tell you that the dishwasher isn’t working and you’ve already had to repair that dishwasher twice this year, maybe replace it instead. This will please your tenant, and it will also eliminate any future repairs you might have to make on that old and deteriorating fridge.
By making small upgrades and updates, you’re maintaining your property proactively. You’re also working towards better tenant retention and higher rental values.
Consider Leveraging Alexandria Property Management
One of the best ways to put together a responsive and professional maintenance plan is with the help of a professional Alexandria property management company. Our job is to protect the condition of your home and to ensure it’s safe and habitable for your tenants. We’ll save you money with preferred vendors and careful attention.
Would you like to hear more maintenance tips that are personalized for you and your property? Please don’t hesitate to contact us at Comfort Property Management. We lease, manage, and maintain investment properties throughout Northern Virginia, in Arlington, Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, McLean, Ashburn, Sterling, Springfield, Reston, Chantilly, Manassas, Centreville, and Herndon.