spring cleaningTo properly maintain and ensure the safety of your rental properties it’s important to run through a checklist on a regular basis. I like to do my inspections and maintenance in the fall and spring if not more often to make sure that things are as they should be. I’ve included the items that I look at and would love to hear back from you if I have missed anything.

1. Test the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

2. Are you getting that insurance discount for having a fire extinguisher on each floor of the home? Make sure that it is accessible and has had service if needed.

3. Ensure that all  windows and doors are functioning properly and are lockable.

4. Once fire season has begun do not mow, weed eat, or use a chain saw on dry vegetation.

5. If applicable check hoses and seals for dishwashers and washing machines to ensure that they are not leaking or needing replaced and clean the lint ducting on dryers.

6. Keep vegetation away from structures. This will create a defensible space around the home in the event of a forest fire and will eliminate rotting, rubbing, and other deleterious effects to the siding and paint of the home.

7. Inspect heating and A/C units, remind tenants to change the filters regularly. I provide filters for my tenants although that is not always enough incentive for them to change the filter unfortunately.

8. Inspect sinks and toilets thoroughly for leaks and worn out parts.

9. Ensure that electrical outlets are being used properly and are not overloaded and that the wiring is in good working condition.

10. Take a look at decks, patios, and the overall property for potential hazards. Ensure boards are not rotten and that trip hazards are minimized.

11. Check the roof and gutters to ensure that all is properly maintained and functioning.

12. “unwinterize” any outdoor spickets and turn the irrigation system back on if applicable

A little bit of work and diligence on your part can; catch an issue before damage occurs to the property, the tenants will be happier, and you could even avoid a potential lawsuit. It’s worth the time to know what is going on with your property.