Damages to your unit and regular wear-and-tear are a reality that all property owners are going to face when renting out their properties. Avoiding significant or unexpected damages can sometimes be improbable; however, keeping up with maintenance on your property can help prevent or lessen damages.
When it comes to needing to make repairs, having a list of contractors readily available will create less of a sense of chaos for your tenants while helping you to build a healthy work relationship with those vendors.
A well-maintained property can bring in more applicants that can develop into long-term tenants!
Choose Reputable Contractors
When choosing vendors that will conduct your property maintenance, its important to find a company or person that is reliable and will perform the work that is being done in a timely and professional manner. Tenants can often feel uneasy with strangers entering their home to do work, so making sure to put them at ease is equally as important! Conduct thorough research on companies or individuals in Richmond that you are considering working with: if you are working with individuals, asking them to submit to a basic background check might help make you and your tenants feel more comfortable with your decision.
Using a service like Angie’s List can also be helpful: Angie’s List is a directory of certified professionals in your area that are reviewed by those that have used their services in the past. Curating a list of trustworthy, dependable contractors will serve you well long-term as a landlord.
Along with the vendors that you choose, create a list of common issues that can occur within your property: keeping these two lists can make it quicker and easier for you to find the appropriate vendor to call, rather than have to do your research once the issue is already happening.
Stay Up-To-Date with Preventative Maintenance
Preventative maintenance is necessary as a property owner; making sure that you take care of small issues that might come up—or keeping those minor issues from happening in the first place—can save you a lot of time and money in the long run. Set expectations with your tenants that you will inspect your property every six months: during that time, you can change any HVAC filters, check the plumbing for leaks, and replace batteries in fire alarms. Indicate to your tenants if any of the preventative maintenance on the property is going to be their responsibility—concisely listing anything the tenant is going to be responsible for in the lease leaves little room for confusion later!
Periodically Beautify the Property
In between leasing terms with tenants, make sure that you are doing any more extensive projects that might need to be done from your list of common issues. Any painting, appliance maintenance, or landscaping can be handled at this time without interference from your tenant: when the property is rented out to a new tenant, they will see that it is well maintained and will be more likely to take better care of the home. If a property is rented out in less than ideal condition, a tenant may consider that a sign that the landlord doesn't care about the state of their rental. If you have multiple Richmond rental properties, it might be worth it to update everything to the same standards: carpet, tile, and fixtures. That way, if there is any damage done to the property, you already have some of the materials that you need on hand.
Maintain Realistic Expectations for Tenants
Some landlords choose to have their tenants be responsible for a portion of property maintenance, like lawn care. If you are going to make any portion of maintenance the responsibility of your tenant, make sure that it is clearly outlined in your lease. Along with outlining any tenant responsibilities, also set clear expectations when it comes to the security deposit: tenants that invest more in a security deposit are more likely to take better care of a property because they know if the property is well maintained, they will get a portion of that deposit back.
Let a Property Manager Do the Heavy Lifting!
Keeping your Richmond rental property maintained and like new for your renters can be a challenge, and preventative maintenance is something that people often forget is going to be a time investment that comes with being a property owner.
However, taking the time to do the job right—or finding a property manager who will—can help reduce tenant turnover! Sorting through various maintenance tasks and finding a list of trustworthy contractors can be difficult and can seem daunting: consider hiring an expert property manager to handle these tasks for you!
If you want to save time and money when maintaining your property, contact us for a free consultation about how to maximize your investment property!