Investment property maintenance tricks can make your life easier saving you time now and later.
I have not been posting much lately as I have been buried with multiple apartment turnovers. As I mentioned previously, several years ago, I moved many of my lease end dates to May 31. Subsequently this can be a busy time of year for me. While I was helping my handyman on an overhaul that we are doing to one of my units (new carpet, paint (ceilings, walls, and trim), new doors, and every last maintenance issue), I thought about some maintenance tips and tricks that I use to make my life easier and make my investment properties more bullet proof. Below is a list of ones that I do during an apartment turnover.
- I am not sure why, but I always find the door knobs in my units are loose when we do a turnover. I bought a small tube of “Loc-Tite“, which most mechanics use, that will almost glue the screw into the knob (do not buy the permanent product as you will never get the knob off!).
- The only locks in the entire unit are the deadbolts on the doors. I do not like keyed knobs anywhere in the unit or on the front doors as it is just asking for someone to lock themselves out of their apartment or room. I confirm we do not have any stray locking knobs.
- I always run drain cleaner down each drain to insure they are operating correctly. I bought a product called “Thrift” at the plumbing supply store. It is extra strong and used by most of the drain cleaning experts.
- If the toilet is not working correctly or is more than 5 years old, I replace it. Yes, the parts only cost $8, but I don’t trust them as I had an $800 water bill on a single family house after my plumber just replaced the parts. I could have bought 8 complete toilets that month for the cost of that water bill!
- I leave a box of cheap furnace filters during the turnover to help the tenants know to change the filter occasionally.
- Even if the tenants have never complained about mice, I put a few fresh mouse bait pouches in the basement and under the stove in my fall maintenance. This insures we are ready if any of the critters gets into the building.
- Remember to replace batteries in the smoke detectors.
Most of these items are inexpensive, but they can save you taking a maintenance call later. Find your small repair items and do them at the turnover.