Expert Tips for Success
The arrival of Spring puts a heaping serving of maintenance on every property manager’s plate. That’s because a change of season is an ideal checkpoint for property managers to perform a comprehensive maintenance review. We’ve broken down Spring property management into eight categories below, including essential maintenance tasks that should be on every property manager’s to-do list.
Landscaping and Lawn Maintenance
Meticulous landscaping and lawn care are essential to maintaining a property’s overall health. Here are a few core landscaping and lawn maintenance tasks to consider as we head toward Spring.
- Fertilize lawns
- Test your soil to determine its nutrient needs and optimal fertilization window.
- Verify the size of your lawn(s) for accurate fertilization application.
- Consider using a slow-release fertilizer to maximize absorption and longevity.
- Prune trees, bushes, and shrubs
- Check trees for any broken limbs or encroaching branches.
- Trim bushes and shrubs back for a clean, symmetrical aesthetic.
- Mulch plant and tree beds
- Make sure the applied mulch layer is between one and two inches thick.
- Keep mulch from touching tree trunks.
The details make all of the difference in pleasing new or returning tenants. Unfortunately, damaged patio furniture, a poorly maintained porch, and chipping paint can all send the wrong message about your property’s potential.
- Clean walkways, patios, porches, and decks
- Consider renting/using a power washer for a comprehensive cleaning.
- Remove leftover yard waste from Fall/Winter.
- Repair exterior features
- Inspect your roof, siding, gutters, and other exterior features for repair needs. Falling behind on repairs is one of the most common mistakes property managers make.
- Replace damaged or worn furniture
- Porch and patio furnishings can take a beating over the Winter months if they aren’t properly stored.
- Apply a fresh coat of paint
- Few things improve a home’s aesthetic, like a fresh coat of paint. While this isn’t necessarily an annual task, Spring is a great time to paint if that’s part of your plan.
Unexpected issues with HVAC equipment can throw a wrench in your day (or month). Fortunately, HVAC issues are largely avoidable with seasonal maintenance from a trained professional. In addition, a local HVAC technician will run a series of checks and tests on your system to ensure it’s ready for the warm weather.
- Schedule seasonal maintenance for AC units
- HVAC maintenance includes changing air filters, inspecting units, and cleaning ducts.
Cleaning and Inspection
Although routine cleaning spaces and inspecting equipment are two of the most important tasks to perform during a seasonal shift.
- Perform deep cleaning on carpets and floors
- Remember, a pleasant-smelling property is as vital as a pleasant-looking one.
- Inspect and repair appliances
- Check washers, dryers, refrigerators, dishwashers, etc.
- Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
- Consider replacing the batteries of all devices during your Spring review.
Unwanted pests often use seasonal temperature changes to establish a foothold in and around properties. The increases in moisture create breeding grounds for bugs, while wear and tear on property exteriors offer new entries for rodents. Here are a few ways to stay one step ahead of pesky pests.
- Clean and clear garages, sheds, and storage spaces
- Loose trash/waste attracts pests.
- Piles of stuff in storage double as a shelter for pests.
- Perform an interior/exterior pest inspection
- Look for potential entries into the property. Check dark and damp spaces, like attics, basements, and closets, for evidence of pests.
Safety and Security
Tenant safety is every property manager’s first priority. Here is a list of safety and security tasks that can help put your mind at ease as your tenants enjoy a safe and secure space.
- Check locks on windows and doors
- Consider installing cameras on front/back doors
- A doorbell camera is a great way to put your tenants at ease as an affordable upgrade to your property’s security measures.
- Check all fire/gas sensors, detectors, and alarms
- Replace batteries, replace older units, and test each unit individually.
Tenant communication is a crucial part of successfully managing a property. Good communication can help a manager-tenant relationship thrive, while lackluster communication can undermine the entire arrangement. So now that you’ve performed some Spring maintenance on your property, it’s time to let your tenant(s) know.
- Update property policies and present them to the tenant(s).
- Confirm the primary line of communication with the tenant(s)
- With so many means of communicating, picking one or two go-to channels is beneficial.
Budgeting and Planning
The key to budgeting and planning for spring maintenance is prioritizing property management tasks, from must-haves to nice-to-haves. Here are a few ways to plan your spring maintenance activities.
- Break costs into categories
- Maintenance categories include fixed, routine, replacements, and emergency.
- Triage maintenance activities in order of importance
- Fixing the dishwasher takes priority over mowing the lawn.
- Use a standard formula to estimate costs
- Create budget estimates using square footage, a percentage of the property value, or a percentage of monthly operating expenses.
Be sure to check back at the end of the Summer to review our guide to preparing properties for the Fall and Winter.
Schedule Professional Spring Maintenance for Your Property Today! 704.535.1122