Now is the time for landlords to prepare their properties for winter, not just for the comfort of your tenants, but also to avoid future repair costs. The following check list will help you keep your property in tip-top condition right through to spring.
Lag all pipe work
Check the installation of all water pipes are properly lagged and insulated, particularly in the loft and external cupboards. This will help prevent the pipes from freezing and splitting, which can be very expensive to repair.
Top-quality insulation is essential for preventing heat loss during the colder months. There are often financial grants available to improve insulation, particularly in loft areas, and in some cases you can have it done entirely free of charge.
Before winter sets in, ensure that your boiler is in good working order. This will help avoid future breakdowns and ensure that the boiler remains safe.
Smoke and CO alarms
New regulations introduced on 1 October 2015 require there to be a working smoke alarm on each habitable floor of a rental property and a CO alarm in any room with a solid fuel appliance (for instance a working fireplace).
With the dark nights drawing in your should check that the intruder alarm is properly working, too.
Check for missing tiles, cracked render, and structural damage
Slipped tiles and mild structural damage can allow significant water damage in a bad storm, while cracked render can fail if frost is formed behind it. Nip potential trouble in the bud now by having any problems fixed.
Check dead, dying trees
Falling trees can do a great deal of damage in a storm. Check the larger trees close to your property for any signs of weakness, as dead or dying trees can easily fall in high winds.
Richard Maby, Head of Savills Henley Lettings, comments:
“Aside from general maintenance, these steps will help landlords keep their property in good working order, and safeguard their tenants. The steps also help them to avoid a lot of the stress involved in dealing with breakdowns.
“Landlords who have a managing agent, should check that their agent is taking care of these things for them.
"For properties which are untenanted, it is certainly worth considering using a service such as Savills Void Management. This ensures properties are looked after during winter months and resolves any problems that might arise quickly and efficiently.”
Contact Savills Property Management team.