Fall is here, which means that the cold weather isn’t far behind. This means that you may need to get started on the list of maintenance tasks that you’ve been putting off all season. You want to make sure that your rental property is in tip-top condition so you attract renters, and also maintain the integrity of your investment. If you have experience owning a rental property then you know that routine maintenance is a must, and is especially important before winter months that bring snow and ice take its toll. So long as you and your tenants are willing to work together to create a home that is ready for fall, you will both have an easier time in this experience!

If you want to learn more about how to purchase real estate with your non-recourse loan and self-directed IRA, speak with the team at First Western Federal Savings Bank. Our team of non-recourse loan lenders are here to answer any questions you may have. Give us a call today.

Check the Exterior of Your Property

Before creating a lengthy list, take a walk around the perimeter of your property. Keep an eye out for any problems, or potential problems, that may arise during the winter, and perform preventive maintenance so those problems never occur. Structural tasks will be the job of the landlord and should include searching for areas that need to be caulked in order to improve heating efficiency, checking the function of the roof, turning off outdoor water faucets and drain pipes, ensuring the siding is stable and secure, properly insulating windows and doors, and cleaning out the rain gutters before fall leaves have had a chance to settle in. 

Take a look at the landscaping surrounding your property. Is there any vegetation or foliage that needs to be cut back, looks overgrown, or looks like it could damage the property with the help of winter storms? During this time, it is also a good idea to remind tenants of their responsibilities in helping to maintain the property, like shoveling snow and cleaning up their pets before the first snowfall. It may also be a good idea to remind them of the lease restrictions before they get started decorating for the holidays. If your tenants will not be shoveling snow, then it is recommended to hire a snow shoveling service as early on as you can. These services are high in demand and you will want a company that is committed to helping maintain your property.

Before heading inside, take a look at any potential slipping or tripping hazards. You may want to fix uneven pavement, or even install handrails along stairways. This could be especially beneficial if your tenants are older. 


Interior Maintenance

After you have completed your exterior property check, the hardest tasks have already been completed. While investigating the interior of your rental property, be sure to check the furnace. You may want to ask the tenants to replace the filter themselves, but it is up to you what tasks you choose to assign them. It may also be a good idea to hire an HVAC professional to inspect your HVAC unit so you can repair any issues that are in need. If your rental property has a chimney, you may want to hire a chimney sweep to remove any blockages. It may also be a good idea to invest in a chimney cap so no animals make your chimney their home. 

If your property is in an area that experiences high rates of pests, whether it be rodents or bugs, then you’ll want to prepare accordingly. Set up mouse traps around the exterior and interior of your home, if need be, and place bug catching strips around windows and small gaps in walls or basements. That being said, if you do notice gaps or cracks in walls, then it is definitely a good idea to seal them up.


Make Sure Your Tenant is Involved 

If you are enlisting the help of your tenants, be sure to be reasonable about the tasks you assign them as well as yourself. However, every landlord should make it a priority to check in with their tenant every now and again. You want to make sure they are maintaining the property up to leasing standards and if not, communication is key. Set those expectations again if you need to so you can maintain the Integrity of your property. If you don’t have any current tenants then you can use this time to really refresh the state of your rental property. Once the maintenance is done you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the fall real estate season. 

If you do not have experience purchasing real estate with your non-recourse loan and would like to get started, contact our lenders at First Western Federal Savings Bank. Bolster your retirement fund and learn how to take advantage of your self-directed IRA. Give us a call today to learn more.