As landlords it’s important to prepare for the colder seasons adequately, so here are some easy tips on how to prepare for cold weather. Remember: it’s much easier to prepare now than it is with a cold house (not forgetting that tenants that will be angry and cold!)
Around the time this blog is published it’s beginning to get cold as we head into winter and the colder months of the year. Here are six cheap and easy ways to guard your house against the cold:
1 – Remember to talk to the tenants! They are going to be the ones who are living in the house so make sure they are happy with the temperature, tell them they can let you know if the house gets too cold. Also, make sure everyone in the house knows how to adjust the temperature correctly – you want everyone to know how the boiler/thermostat works and no one to have to open a window to cool the house down when it’s snowing!
2 – Make sure you have clear and clean gutters before it starts getting really cold. Gutters that are full of detritus can very easily freeze, and this can have some negative effects. Frozen gutter can decrease the life of the gutters (meaning they’ll break and you’ll have to get someone up there on ladders in the freezing cold, which is dangerous and expensive). Frozen gutters can also cool the house down a surprising amount.
3 – Check to see if you have a boiler that’s to specifications and working! It can be easy to forget about the boiler, but it’s what will keep the house warm and this will solve loads of problems before they even start. Obviously repairing a boiler or even changing one isn’t cheap, but it’s an investment, and landlords need to keep on top of their boilers when it comes to the age and conditions.
4 – Ensure that radiators are bled before they start being used more consistently. Radiators don’t work nearly as effectively when they need to be bled. What’s more it can actually damage the central heating of a property if they heating is used excessively and the radiators need to be bled.
5 – Though this may seem like a strange piece of advice, make sure outside areas have adequate lighting. This has many befits during the winter months, it will firstly make sure that tenants that leave the house do not fall and injure themselves. However it will also deter the burglars that may start to become more prevalent when it’s darker (especially around Christmas time where there are guaranteed to be high value items in the house…)
6 – Lastly, make sure you have the correct insurance. Unfortunately, even with the best and most attentive tenants living in a brand new house, there still may be problems. However, you want to make sure that they get sorted as soon as possible so you don’t have negative impacts for you as a landlord (such as having to pay back rent to tenants) and your tenants (such as having to move out of the property)
Nick Fox started his property investment career 10 years ago and his portfolio has grown to one of the largest in the UK. Nick now mainly focuses on HMOs (houses in multiple occupation) and works to help others achieve property success too. Visit here to find out how he can help you.
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