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5 top maintenance tips for the summer

The summer is a great time to get on with some of the bigger maintenance jobs, while the days are long and there’s far less chance of rain and wind getting in the way. So find out if your tenants are taking a summer holiday and schedule any necessary works at a time when it will cause them the least inconvenience.

Here are our top five recommendations for things to look at over the coming months:

1. Check the roof

Ensure someone takes a look at the loft or roof space to check there aren’t any gaps where you can see light coming in – because that’s where water can penetrate. Also have a look from the ground outside to make sure flashing hasn’t lifted and there aren’t any slipped tiles.

2. Clear the guttering

Although winter’s when we get an extended period of wet weather, summer can bring thunderstorms and the risk of flash flooding. So, while everything’s dry, make sure gutters and drains are cleared, so if there is a sudden heavy downpour, the water can escape.

3. Is the garden easy to maintain?

It’s very easy for gardens in rented properties to get overgrown and untidy, simply because tenants don’t tend to prioritise the outside of the property. So have a critical eye cast over the garden during June and July, when plants, shrubs and trees are growing at their fastest, and consider:

a. Would it be wise to severely cut back or remove some?
b. Could you replace some fast-growing plants with more hardy, lower-maintenance ones?
c. Is it worth paving an area currently laid to lawn?

Although you’ll need to spend a little money now, it’s likely to be worthwhile to help keep the exterior looking its best and reduce the need for a lot of work to get it in shape between tenancies.

4. Service the plumbing system

Since your tenants are highly unlikely to be using the heating over the summer, it’s the perfect time to bleed radiators, drain down and flush through the system. It’s also a good time to have a boiler service, especially with the new law allowing you to have a gas safety certificate up to two months in advance of the due date. This way, if anything does need repairing or replacing, it’s not going to leave your tenants shivering.

5. Touch up any exterior paintwork

It may be that some of it just needs a good clean, but if you have any flaking or discoloured paintwork, get it touched up while the weather’s warm and it’s going to dry quickly. And while you’re looking at the window frames and sills, check the seals and replace any that look to be failing.

The smarter your property looks the better it will let – and that includes keeping hold of your current tenants as well as helps maintain or improve your property’s value. Although you might feel you’re getting in their way by having maintenance work carried out, they’ll be pleased to see you’re taking care of their home.

Finally, while it’s warmer, do encourage your tenants to open the windows to allow air to circulate. Surface mould is one of the most common issues in rented properties and can be caused due to a lack of ventilation and trapping damp air inside. While it won’t get rid of any existing mould, opening the windows on a regular basis will be good for both the property and your tenants’ health and don’t forget, you can be fined for letting a mouldy property, so if you aren’t sure of the cause, ask an expert surveyor’s view.

Because we play by the book we want to tell you that…

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.
There may be a fee for mortgage advice. The actual amount you pay will depend upon your circumstances.
The fee is up to 1% but a typical fee is 0.3% of the amount borrowed.

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