Earning a profit is the exciting part of owning and managing a property, but the role also comes with expenses – mainly maintenance and repair. Some maintenance tasks, such as an annual pest inspection, can be regularly scheduled. However, a burst water pipe or broken down air conditioning, can be more unpredictable.
In my experience, property investors have fallen victim to unexpected maintenance costs as they were unaware of setting aside money for emergency situations. To avoid these unexpected costs or at least minimise the risks, a thorough maintenance plan should be set up. These are some points to include when putting together your maintenance plan.
Always be prepared
Newer dwellings are less likely to require large maintenance budgets but, as a property ages, money should be allocated for future maintenance such as carpet replacement, painting and upgrades to bathrooms and kitchens.
Renovations are costly, but they are a great investment in making sure your property is in top shape as well as adding overall appeal and value.
Continually update your maintenance schedule, and remain on the lookout for possible damages caused by fair wear and tear. Do not discount parts of the property that cannot be seen, such as wiring,plumbing and roofing, especially if you are managing an older property.
Termites could cause trouble for you and your tenant if you do not attend to it. Even if your home is not made of timber, it is still at risk of termite attack. As a matter of fact, steel-framed houses are as susceptible as houses framed with wood. Termites can also cause damage to carpets, books,artworks, plastics, plasterboards and electrical insulation.
New homes are now built with termite barriers, but you might be surprised that they are actually not designed to completely prevent termites from getting in quickly. To avoid having
to deal with such damage, be vigilant about protecting your property against possible termite infestations. Hire a trusted pest control service to take care of the inspections on a regular basis.
Storm and fires
Property owners usually think that their investment properties are insured against storm damage but reading the policy’s fine print is essential. Check the coverage of your insurance policy and make sure that it is up to date. If you spot anything that might cause potential harm to the property such as a hanging tree branch, organise to have it removed or notify the body corporate.Make sure that objects like outdoor furniture and pots in yards or on patios and balconies are secured to prevent them from being blown away.
The majority of home fires are caused by portable heating equipment such as defective heaters or heaters that have been accidentally knocked over or not put on a level surface. During the cooler months, make sure heating equipment is inspected and cleaned. Most importantly, have the correct smoke alarms installed as per state legislature.
Dirty or blocked filters can cause your air conditioner to become less efficient and stop it working to its optimum level of performance. They can result in not only poor airflow, but also a
higher electricity bill, and can ultimately cause your air conditioning system to fail entirely. Dirty filters can also invite bacteria, which can produce allergens that can spread every time your tenants turn your air conditioner on. Cleaning filters is an easy task if your unit has instructions, but you can always employ the services of a professional.
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