MAINTAINING YOUR PROPERTY IN WINTER
Winter is here and the cold weather can cause all manner of issues with your property from frozen or burst pipes to excessive condensation. Here are 3 top tips for measures landlords and tenants to take to avoid the added expense these issues could bring.
1. INSPECT the property – Carry out a full inspection of the property. Check all parts inside and outside of the property looking for any potential damage to pipes, cladding, roof tiles, cracks in wall or brickwork. If you have a flat roof, ensure the cover is in good condition. Check paths, flagging and handrails so people do not slip and fall. Check in the loft and in the basement for signs of damps or leaks. Makes sure you know where the stop taps are for your utilities. Carry out any precautionary work such as clearing the gutters and getting the boiler serviced.
2. INSURE – Be sure you have the correct home insurance in place and be sure you know what is covered. Be sure especially that the boiler cover is in place. There is nothing more frustrating than a boiler that is not working in winter and the expense of getting someone can be eye-watering, especially at busy periods. If you do not want cover, be sure you have the number of a local engineer or handyman that can be called upon in an emergency. Look at whether your insurance will cover things like lost rent, or the cost of rehousing should anything happen that means, unfortunately, the tenants have to be moved out for a short or long period of time.
3. INFORM – Make sure the tenants are aware of anything that you want them to look out for or keep an eye on and to call you or the agent if anything changes. Ignoring something can cause the problem to get worse over time. Give them information on looking after the property in the winter months such as keeping the house at a certain temperature. Check with the tenants if they are going to home over the winter months and ensure heating is put on a timer for when they are away to avoid pipes freezing or condensation forming as this can lead to burst pipes or mould forming.