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8 Fall Maintenance Tips for Landlords

We all know what comes after autumn. With winter just around the corner, it’s best to start any maintenance work before the snow starts to fall.

Let’s admit it:

While it's a winter wonderland for some, to others, it’s a dread. Winter also means piles of snow taking a toll on roofs, the porch, the backyard, walkways and literally, just about everywhere.

So before the next season starts, let’s make sure our rental properties will keep our tenants warm, cozy and safe.

Here are 8 fall maintenance tips that you can do as a landlord for a worry-free winter season:

1. Unclog the roof and gutters

If you have big trees, get rid of branches hanging over your roof. First, it might damage the roof. Second, the leaves from these trees pile on your roof and gutters causing them to clog.

There will be leaves too many to count during this season and the last thing you’d want is to have them there over winter. They add weight to the roof and melted snow creates a pool that may cause leaks. Third, this may form a bridge for animals and insects alike to go inside the property you’re renting out. And fourth, it might reach the power lines. 

If the property has vines around, don’t forget to trim those too. 

2. Rake those leaves

Ah, leaves! There will be a good number of mentions on leaves during autumn. Prevent slipping hazards especially on walkways by having them removed regularly. You may do it yourself, hire someone to do it or offer a rental discount to the tenants if they can do it themselves.

3. Apply weatherstripping

You don’t need to do this every year. You will only need to replace them when they start to shrink or crack. Luckily, quality foam weatherstripping may last up to 10 years. When draft gets in the rental property, it makes the heating system work harder which leads to higher heating costs. Weatherstripping will help keep the heat in and the cold out, and the energy consumption low.

4. Seal holes

Truth be told, your tenants won’t be the only ones trying to keep themselves warm during the fall and winter season. Rodents can squeeze in really small spaces. Patch up holes, big and small, to prevent the wildlife from coming in.

5. Don’t forget the chimney and the heating system

During cold winter nights (or days, even!) the chimney will be your tenant’s best friend. Do at least an annual maintenance. Can’t do it? There are many professional chimney sweeps to do the job for you!

For your heating system, reach out to a contractor to assess whether everything is up and running for your tenants.

6. Turn off, drain and store

Remember to turn off outside faucets, drain sprinkler systems and store hoses to prevent bursting pipes in the future.

7. Keep AC units in

Tenants won’t be needing these over the winter, so might as well keep them in. If you have the bulky ones with the exterior unit out, wrap it with insulation.

8. Do an overall maintenance check

Do a once over on your property, in and out. Fix cracks on the walkways and driveways for everyone’s safety and so you won't end up fixing bigger ones once all the snow melts.

Check whether your railings and stairs are sturdy enough to survive the cold.

Keep the fire extinguisher up to date and have carbon monoxide and smoke detectors installed. 

For sure, there are more tips and hacks for fall maintenance. Hopefully, these tips I shared with you will help you prepare your rental property before winter sets in. 

If you’re ready, make Landlord Prep your go-to resource for landlording education. Here, we offer a complete DIY landlording course to get you on the right track. Join our academy today. If you want, you can check out Flavia’s real estate investing webinar first!