Preventative Maintenance: Guide to Avoid Major Repair Costs for Your Colorado Springs Property

Updated: Apr 14

Deferred and unreported maintenance issues will damage the condition of your Colorado Springs rental property and cost you more money on emergency and unexpected repairs. It’s better to have a preventative maintenance plan in place, both to protect the value of your asset and to extend the lifespan of your most expensive home systems and appliances.

Deferred and unreported maintenance issues will damage the condition of your Colorado Springs rental property and cost you more money on emergency and unexpected repairs. It’s better to have a preventative maintenance plan in place, both to protect the value of your asset and to extend the lifespan of your most expensive home systems and appliances.

Preventative maintenance allows you to catch problems while they’re still small. It’s a good way for rental property owners to keep costs down and to keep an eye on their investments.

Take preventative maintenance seriously when you’re renting out a property in Colorado Springs. Even better – work with a property management company that takes care of this for you. Good property managers will understand the importance of preserving the value of your property. They’ll also help you avoid those major repairs that can seriously damage your return on investment.

Here are some of the things to think about when it comes to maintaining your investment property.

Where to Focus Your Preventative Maintenance Resources

Preventative maintenance can include seemingly minor matters such as pest control and landscaping. Those may seem like no big deal, but termites chewing their way through your walls will lead to big expenses. Set up a contract with a local pest control company for ongoing treatments and inspections. Landscaping is especially important when it comes to trees that may be dropping branches, leaves, and other debris onto the roof of your property.

The most important things you’ll want to focus on when putting together a preventative maintenance plan, however, are your major systems. Most repair calls concern heating in the winter, air conditioning in the summer, and then leaks, drips, or plumbing issues all year long.

Be proactive with your HVAC system and your plumbing.

  • HVAC Preventative Maintenance

Replacing the furnace or repairing a cooling system can be some of the most expensive maintenance you provide as a property owner. Reduce the risk of surprise repairs by working with a local HVAC technician who can conduct annual inspections and provide ongoing service to keep your system running efficiently and correctly.

This will cut down on repair requests and help you optimize the functionality of your most costly units.

This type of general preventative service will save you money and headaches in the long term. You’ll also have peace of mind because well-maintained HVAC systems operate more efficiently. They keep energy bills down and tenants comfortable. That’s good for your bottom line.

Another good reason to take care of preventative HVAC maintenance is that an annual contract with a company usually means you’ll get discounts when something breaks or needs attention outside of their routine visits. You’ll have that relationship in place already, which will make a huge difference if there is an emergency at your rental home that needs attention.

  • Preventative Plumbing

Water is always going to be a problem for your rental property, and it has to be contained. A seemingly minor leak that’s left alone can quickly become a plumbing disaster. Make sure you’re checking under sinks and caulking toilets and tubs whenever you have the chance. Preventative maintenance should include cleaning out gutters, making sure there aren’t branches and leaves gathered on the roof, and looking for evidence of water intrusion. Make sure sprinklers and irrigation systems are functioning and not rusting or deteriorating.

The plumbing and maintenance experts we talk to also recommend draining your hot water heater every year. Like your furnace and air conditioning condenser, your water heater is a major appliance that needs regular servicing. Water heaters can gather sediment, which clogs them and makes them less efficient.

Don’t be afraid to do this yourself. Draining the water heater is not terribly complicated. Turn it off and flush all the water out of it. If you’re not comfortable doing it, contact a plumber or a Colorado Springs property management company. This kind of attention will keep it in good shape and ensure that there aren’t any frantic phone calls from tenants to report that the water heater has burst or begun leaking.

Educating Colorado Springs Tenants on Preventative Maintenance

Tenants are important partners when it comes to taking care of your rental property and paying attention to preventative maintenance. You’ll want your residents to understand that all repair requests should be made as soon as an issue is detected. You don’t want them waiting to report things, as some tenants do. They might worry about bothering you, or they may fear that they’ll be blamed (and charged) for maintenance requests they make. But you want to know about repairs right away. Otherwise, you’ll face extra work and higher expenses.

Include this reporting requirement in the lease agreement and go over your expectations before the tenants move in.

Make sure tenants understand what they’re responsible for. Maybe you’ll ask them to change the air filters every three or six months. You may want to provide the filter size in the lease or even provide the filters themselves and then roll the cost into the rent.

Preventative Maintenance and Your Lease Agreement

As we mentioned, it should be very clear in your lease agreement what the responsibilities are for the tenant and the owner when it comes to preventative maintenance. Include a list of what needs to be done within the body of the lease or as an addendum. You want to state what maintenance the tenant is responsible for and the cost they will be charged for non-compliance.

For example, if the tenant lets light bulbs burn out and does not replace them, they will be charged $10 for each bulb that is burnt out at the end of the lease term. When this is in the lease agreement, no one is surprised by the charge.

Your lease agreement should also reference preventative maintenance inspections, which should happen annually. You want your residents to be prepared that you’ll come to the property once a year to take a look around and make sure there aren’t any potential issues.

Preventative Maintenance Inspections

Every property owner wants to assume that their tenant will maintain the property properly and keep things looking great. It’s good to be trusting, but you also want to verify that this is the case. That’s where the annual preventative maintenance inspection comes in. This should be done annually, at minimum. If you have a tenant who seems to let things slip and doesn’t always report repair needs, you may want to get inside the property twice a year.

Always provide your tenant at least a 24-hour notice period.

Once you’re at the property, check the systems we discussed earlier. Look at the HVAC, check for leaks and drips under sinks and behind toilets, and test the appliances, faucets, locks, and lights. You can also use this as an opportunity to make sure the tenant is abiding by the terms of the lease. Talk to your tenant and make sure they have everything they need to take care of the property.

Preventative Maintenance Requires a Team of Vendors and Contractors

You can’t have a good preventative maintenance plan without a great team of vendors. Create a list of licensed and insured vendors and contractors who are committed to caring for your investment property. If there’s an emergency in the middle of the night, you don’t want to be looking for a plumber. You want to have someone reliable and responsive who will answer your call.

Develop relationships with professionals before you need them, and listen to their advice and recommendations when it comes to caring for your property. Make sure all of the vendors you work with are licensed and insured to prevent risk and liability.

It’s also important to ensure you have all the insurance you need in case a covered catastrophe does occur. Preventative maintenance will help you avoid costly breakdowns of systems and appliances, but it can’t help you avoid the snowstorm that sends frozen branches through windows or trees through your backyard fence. Unpredictable things can still occur. Make sure you’re covered.

Think about renter’s insurance as well. Accidents happen, and tenants can cause considerably more damage than normal wear and tear. You might have insurance, but your deductible may be $5,000 or more, and if you file a claim, the insurance company could increase your rate substantially.

Instead of relying completely on your own insurance policy, require the tenant to provide evidence of either liability insurance or renter’s insurance which includes liability and insurance for the tenant’s personal possessions.

Preventative maintenance is a topic that covers a lot of ground. The most important things you can do is to check on your property once in a while, establish a good and trusting relationship with your tenants, and put together a great network of vendors.

Or, you can partner with a professional Colorado Springs property management company, and we’ll take care of all this for you. Please contact us at Empower Realty Team. We lease, manage, and maintain investment properties in Colorado Springs, Monument, Castle Rock, Parker, and Aurora.

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