Most landlords begin their journey of renting out property believing that it’s an easy route to earning a passive income. But truth be told, being a landlord is a job that comes with numerous responsibilities and challenges. After you’ve invested in a property with the intention of renting it out, you are responsible for providing your tenants with safe living conditions and modern amenities to support their lifestyles.
It is vital to familiarize yourself with the local landlord legislation's and requirements, and take care of your tax obligations adequately. Maintenance is by far the most challenging task that landlords have to address routinely. Landlords are legally obligated to carry out routinely repairs, maintain the property, ensure tenant safety and pay utility bills, amongst other responsibilities.
It is pertinent to note that landlords do not have 100% control over their properties and they cannot constantly monitor every aspect to see how well the tenants are keeping their rental accommodations. But all the maintenance and repairs that arise due to lack of proper housekeeping or structural damages fall on the landlord.
Keep reading to explore some of the common maintenance issues and how you can deal with them effectively.
Common Issues in Rental Properties
Leakages: Faucets & Toilets
Leaking faucets and toilets do not put your rental property at risk for damages, but they can increase the water bill at an alarming rate. However, when neglected for a prolonged period, things can take a serious turn and these leakages can cause massive flooding. If you fail to address this issue timely, you will have to restore and replace all the water supply system to fix the corrosion.
Clogged Drains: Kitchen Sink & Bathtub
Clogging is a major issue faced by all households, typically with the bathtub and kitchen sink drains. Clogging can create a distasteful odor, and it can give rise to water contamination. Ineffective drainage can cause the water to flow, leading to extensive damages in the walls, and even the structural foundation of your property.
Issues with the HVAC system
Heating, ventilation and air conditioning malfunctions are common, and they not only inconvenience the tenants, but also increase energy consumption and utility bills. The risk of carbon monoxide leakages is always associated with rental properties that utilize gas heating.
Mold growth in the bathroom is extremely common, and it typically occurs due to lack of property ventilation and excessive humidity. It is a major health hazards as it triggers the risk factors of allergies and asthma. It is crucial to fix mold immediately as it gets immensely hard to eliminate once its starts spreading.
A leaking roof is a major problem, no matter how minor it seems, and the sooner you fix it the better for it can deteriorate the entire structure of your rental property, especially the ceilings and attic. It is ideal to fix the roof elements or consider a replacement. Both are extremely expensive undertakings, so it is better to take a proactive preventive strategy towards leakages in your roof.
All tenants hate pests, ants and rodents, and these insects are extremely common across rental properties. No one wants cockroaches, rodents and ants crawling around their space, damaging everything, from furniture to wires and pipes. Getting rid of a pest infestation requires an expensive extermination. However, you can save money by undertaking regular extermination and inspections.
How can you Fix them?
Taking preventive measures is a more budget-friendly endeavor than expensive repairs. It is vital to prioritize regular maintenance and inspections. These regular sessions will help you identify all potential damages and ensure that all appliances and systems are operating adequately. Create a checklist of all the routine maintenance work, such as HVAC systems, water systems, electric wiring and more.
Most landlords schedule inspections only when their tenants are either moving in or moving out. It is vital to prioritize inspections while your tenants are living as this will help you ensure proper and safe conditions. It will also help you keep track of damages and discover whether they are structural issues or the negligence of your tenants is causing them to emerge.
Home Appliances Audit
Landlords are strongly advised to carry out a home appliances audit before renting out their property. If household appliances, such as dishwasher, fridge and others are included in the lease, it is important to ensure that they are functioning adequately. While installing these appliances is not mandatory, it can make the property more attractive.
Planning Maintenance Expenses
As a rule of thumb, 1% of the rental property income should be directed towards annual maintenance. It is highly advisable to plan out your maintenance needs and expenses to avoid sudden and alarmingly high expenditure on unforeseen repairs. Planning your maintenance expenses can help you maintain older properties in pristine condition without spending too much
Property insurance is not a mandatory undertaking, but having sufficient coverage will help you avoid financial burdens and enjoy financial assistance when you need it the most. It is ideal to seek out a landlord’s insurance plan that offers coverage for all kinds of maintenance, property damages and even lost rent.
Landlords are strongly advised to hire a competent property manager if they own more than one rental properties. A property manager will take responsibility for all the repair and maintenance needs while you can sit back, relax and truly enjoy your passive income. A property manager will ensure that your property is well-maintained and all repairs are addressed without delay.
Some renovations and repairs can be hard to neglect, but proper planning and regular inspections can help you reduce the expenses considerably. The above-mentioned tips will help you streamline your maintenance responsibilities and increase the lifespan and value of your property. It is also important to encourage your tenants to take up housekeeping responsibility and maintain a clean property.