Routine maintenance aids in retaining the structural quality and aesthetic appeal of the house. With routine maintenance, you can address any problems as soon as they appear and sometimes even prevent them from occurring at all. Making minor fixes here and there can definitely help you minimize high repair costs in the future and avoid urgent maintenance.
In this article, we take a look at how you can minimize repair costs with the help of routine maintenance.
Meaning Of Routine Home Maintenance
Routine maintenance is a planned activity that involves regular inspections and maintenance of the property and its major systems to resolve existing problems, prevent new problems from cropping up, and minimize repair costs.
It is often scheduled on a weekly, monthly, or yearly basis, depending on the requirements and conditions of the property, and is conducted by professional maintenance specialists who solve the problem effectively and ensure that things last longer.
Routine Structural Maintenance to Minimize Repair Costs
Every building is composed of different materials such as steel, sandstone, bricks, and concrete. These materials become weak over a period of time, especially when they are subjected to weather extremes like rain and snow storms, floods, tornadoes, and more, which are so common to Virginia. This leads to structural issues such as cracks in the wall, roof problems, damaged sidings, cracks in the tiles, and guardrail movements.
Deferring maintenance is not a good idea. Ignoring these concerns for a long time can worsen them and cost you exponentially in the future for heavy repairs or even replacements.
To avoid this, routine structural maintenance should include:
Checking for cracks and mold in walls
Cracks in the walls allow water to penetrate and create excess moisture resulting in the growth of fungi. It is therefore essential to fill these cracks in time and prevent them from widening. Cementing, removing the mold, and checking for leakage through walls are routine maintenance practices that can save you from an expensive structural restoration later.
Maintaining the roof
Removing dust and debris from the rooftop on a regular basis can prevent gutters from being blocked. Check for damages, dents, and cracks while inspecting the roof. The problems in the roof may not be as easily identifiable to a layperson, so it is better to consider hiring professionals for inspecting roofs.
Fix the popping tiles
Popping tiles is another trouble with old properties. It feels hollow under the tiles when you walk on them. However, with timely maintenance and prompt fixing, you can avoid total floor replacements, which may cost you much more in the long run.
No matter the age of your property, routine upkeep ensures that the property is in a well-maintained condition for years to come.
Routine Maintenance of Appliances to Reduce Repair Costs
We often take home appliances for granted and use them until they stop functioning. Running inefficient appliances for a long time can also result in heavy consumption of electricity. Besides, there is a greater chance of them breaking down suddenly and requiring urgent and costly replacements.
Here are some of the things that should be on your appliance maintenance checklist.
Routine Maintenance of the Refrigerator
Check the condenser coil of the refrigerator and clean it if there is insufficient cooling. Avoid slamming the door or keeping the refrigerator open for too long. If the stale food causes a stinky mess, remove and wipe everything inside with a disinfecting cleaning spray.
Check the Heat Efficiency of the Oven
When you find that the oven does not heat food like before, you can reset the temperatures with the help of the user manual. If it still doesn’t work, submit a service request to the company right away. There could be a minor coil issue that can be solved at a low cost and far less than replacing a part of the appliance or the whole oven itself. It is equally important to cleanse the oil spills and other food particles inside the oven to prevent them from stinking and becoming unhygienic.
Clean the Washing Machine
Washing machines are one of those appliances that undergo heavy and rough usage. Neglecting its maintenance can result in a serious breakdown costing you in repairs and replacement parts that are not always affordable.
It is essential to check the dirty exhaust duct of the machine as it can damage the vent and the dryer. Setting the functions carefully, keeping the display panel clean and dry so it remains intact and the buttons functioning well, and regular tub-cleaning are some other easy ways of avoiding repair costs for this appliance.
Routine servicing can add years to the appliances and ensure a greater return on your investment. Run regular inspections and get them serviced regularly, even when they work well.
Routine Maintenance Of Plumbing Systems And Drainage
Plumbing and drainage systems make up around 15% of your property’s total market value. Blockage, leaks in water pipes, sinks, and toilets can quickly reduce the rental value of your property. Here are some routine maintenance tips for plumbing systems in your Roanoke rental property.
Routine Maintenance to Avoid Clogged Drains
Clogged drains may result in major household damage like flooding or wetting of furniture. Avoid flushing too much toilet paper, sanitary napkins, makeup wipes, and food to prevent such blockage.
Routine Upkeep of The Pipes
It is good to check pipes and drain outlets regularly on your property. Identify plumbing issues such as leaking pipes, loose taps, faulty faucets, blocked toilets, worn-out hose bibb, damaged valve, partial clogs, sedimentary build-up, corrosion, and rust. Often, leakage problems go undetected and that can waste thousands of gallons of water – and your hard-earned money – yearly.
Replace Faulty Faucets
Consider replacing faulty faucets, and getting the leak repaired at the earliest opportunity. A worn O-ring fixed in the nozzle can cause water to leak due to frequent pushing and pulling of the handle. You can replace it once in a while to avoid repeated issues.
Seasonal Plumbing Maintenance
Seasonal plumbing maintenance allows you to prepare the plumbing systems of your home for the upcoming seasons. Professionals recommend carrying out such maintenance before the onset of summer and winter.
For summer, a seasonal plumbing professional will check the washing machine outlets, faucets, and shower fixtures as these are used more during summer. For winter, the plumber would examine if the exposed pipes are insulated well enough to avoid them bursting due to frozen water. This can minimize plumbing emergencies that occur due to seasonal changes.
Routine Maintenance of Furniture in Furnished Rentals
Weather changes affect wooden furniture causing it to shrink and expand. Although normal wear and tear are certain, it is necessary to maintain the furniture on a routine basis and ensure years of durability. Here are some tips that can help you maintain the quality and aesthetics of the furniture.
- Clean the furniture with a damp washcloth and rinse with a soap-free cleanser and dry the surface completely. Avoid using ammonia in cleaning as it can damage wooden furniture.
- It is good to use a soft, dry, and lint-free brush to dust your furniture. Regular dusting will protect the furniture from unwanted termite and grit build-up.
- Frequent exposure to extra moisture, such as condensation from a cold glass of water, can create mold on the surface of wooden furniture. Use coasters or cork bottoms to remove unsightly water rings from the surface.
- Placing hot dishes or cups on the surface may cause unwanted stains. Therefore, use a trivet, natural fiber table cloth, or oven mitt to protect your furniture.
- Avoid placing wooden furniture in damp places such as bathrooms, kitchen, or laundry areas.
- In the case of metal furniture, look for corrosion or rust. Apply rust remover in case it increases and damages your furniture any further.
Landlords cannot afford frequent purchases or replacements of furniture. Therefore, it is important to follow these maintenance tips and improve the life of your furniture.
Routine Maintenance Of Electrical Systems In Your Roanoke Rental Property
Carry out regular maintenance of the wiring and electrical systems in your home. Neglecting it can lead to serious electrocution hazards putting your Roanoke property and your tenants at risk. Here are some routine checks that you should undertake, with respect to electrical systems.
Fix broken switchboards and wires
If the swtichboard’s exterior body appears broken, or you find cuts on the plastic coating of wires, get them fixed immediately. Such gaps expose the inner metallic cords to water, which can result in serious accidents. Call a qualified electrician to fix the issue effectively instead of making temporary fixes with seal tapes.
Invest in energy-saving equipment
If you’re receiving high-cost electricity bills, you should check the electricity consumption in your house. To minimize these costs, use energy-efficient appliances as these consume less power, are made of light materials rather than heavy metals, and are more durable.
Install energy-saving lights as they last longer and illuminate well as compared to regular bulbs. Sometimes these are costlier than generic lights but surely reduce the number of instances of replacements in the longer run.
Performing routine maintenance keeps your property pleasing and habitable and eliminates the scope for complaints by tenants. Such homes in Roanoke also enjoy a high market value, further boosting the owner’s ROI. We, at Lawson Realty Group, can help you reduce the repair costs of your Roanoke investment property through our proactive maintenance services, regular inspections, and our network of licensed contractors. For more details, connect with us.