A property has to endure the harshest of elements during the winter months – brickwork, roofing, guttering and garden fences all take a battering.
As we mentioned in our tenants spring property maintenance guide, the onset of the calmer weather provides the opportunity to evaluate things and see if the property needs attention.
So, making sure your tenant has plenty of notice time, arrange a convenient time for you to look around the exterior of the property. This will allow you to get an idea of its overall health.
It’s a great preventative measure to stop issues developing into bigger, costlier problems later down the line.
Outside of property
Often, landlords can see property maintenance as being more about the inside of the property rather than the outside. But with winter inflicting everything from gale-force winds, prolonged periods of heavy rain, cold temperatures and snow - it's very important to inspect the property externally as well.
Spring brings with it the opportunity to see how the roof has held-up during the winter. There could be exposed cladding, dislodged tiles or some may have fallen off completely. An easy way to see evidence of this is to search around the footprint of the property on the ground, looking for the telltale evidence of broken tiles.
Leaks can also occur, causing problems in loft spaces and attics as well as affecting rooms lower down in the property and potentially impacting on soft furnishings. Inspecting the roof is therefore extremely important during your property’s first post-winter check.
It’s a good idea to inspect the guttering too as strong winds can easily disrupt even the strongest of guttering, warping the wipes or pulling it from the wall fixings. This is especially important during the spring as any disruption in guttering or build-up of debris could cause a leak or blockage that is unwelcome during April showers.
Whether it’s checking the roof tiles or the guttering, in general, we recommend you get a qualified trade person to look over it, especially when a ladder and heights are involved
Over the course of the wet, cold winter months, protective paints or seals on wooden objects can and do come away or break. Add increasing temperatures as spring kicks in to the equation and you have a potent mixture that can encourage rot.
The advice here is to be vigilant during inspections and make sure areas of the property that have been affected are treated as soon as you can before it gets any worse.
Removal of debris around property and front and back garden
Clearing-up nature’s winter leftovers such as leaves, twigs and other dead vegetation can be dealt with at this time as well.
Aside from being an unsightly nuisance, obstructions and rubbish accumulating around the house can be a safety concern and be a potential fire hazard if they’re allowed to dry out in the summer months.
White goods and appliances
Spring is all about the ‘big clean’ and out with the old, and in with the new. So it makes sense to use this as a chance to look over the white goods and appliances and replace any if need be.
Also, give vents of washing machines and tumble dryers the once over - vents get clogged-up with fabric lint and dust.
Elsewhere, electric coils behind the fridge can also suffer from dust build-up something that increase the chances of the appliance failing.