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How to Properly Maintain Your Property

Unlike cars, which depreciate the moment they are driven out of the lot, buildings and other real estate property are investments that you count on to increase in price, or at the very least, ensure you break even when the time comes to sell. Unfortunately, many landlords and property owners fail to conduct regular property maintenance, and this can lead to the devaluation and deterioration of what should be as much of an investment as stocks or bonds.

Talk to Your Tenants

Whether you lease apartments or business space, you need to be sure that your tenants are clear about their responsibility to you and the building as a whole. Let them know that you will handle building maintenance (either yourself or by hiring a professional) as long as you know about an issue. If they are the cause of the problem, let them know you are open to working something out between you. It can be easy to try to place everything at the feet of the tenants, but that often leads to shoddy do-it-yourself work or that the building maintenance will be neglected until the tenants leave and the problem has become much worse. If they feel comfortable knowing you won't charge them harshly, they will be more likely to keep you informed.

Be Tough

There will still be tenants who will try to avoid paying for damage or even basic wear and tear that they have caused to your property. They may try to put the cost wholly on you. You must make it clear to tenants that while you may be good-natured about basic repairs, if they do not inform you of a problem or they cause damage to your property, you will pursue all legal options, including a lawsuit if necessary.

Self Inspections and Routine Work

Tenants may not realize there is a leak in a basement they never use or that the heating system has become less efficient, so they can hardly be blamed for not reporting these problems to you. There are steps that you, as the owner, can take to be sure you aren't left with surprises down the road. One of the first things you should do is self-inspect or hire an inspector to check your property once a year to spot any potential problem areas.

Certain systems require routine maintenance. This could be a matter of flushing lines, regular cleaning, or filter replacement. Keep track of the recommended timeline for your heating, water, wastewater, electrical systems, etc. When it is time for something to be cleaned or replaced, make sure that it is. That should reduce the odds that you will be suddenly faced with dirty water or no heat that could do costly damage to your building or make your tenants insist that you reduce their rent for that month.

Routine property maintenance and staying on top of small issues can help to ensure that you aren't later surprised by big, expensive repairs. These steps were provided by Asset Maintenance on the Sunshine Coast and if you follow them they can also keep your building operating perfectly and bringing in rental or resale money years into the future.

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