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How to Avoid Water Damage in Your Rental Property

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Water damage to a property is a challenge to resolve, but every year it impacts a large number of properties all over the country. Water damage is common because water runs in every home, and water leaks may only be detected after a while.

Water damage is especially disastrous if it occurs in a rental property. As, not only does it cause damage to your investment, but will also impact your monthly bottom line.

To avoid such a scenario, we at Florida Property Management and Sales have put together, the following tips to hopefully prevent water damage from ever occurring to your investment property.

Inspect Your Plumbing and Fixtures

Inspections are essential as they help you detect issues before they occur. Generally speaking, plumbing issues will usually offer some obvious signs prior to the damage. Signs such as:

  • A wobbly toilet
  • Wall or ceiling paint bubbling
  • Discoloration of water
  • Increase in water bills
  • Puddles of water on the property

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If you notice any of these signs during your routine inspections, seek the help of a water damage expert immediately. Ideally, you’ll want to inspect the plumbing and appliances at least once every year.

Evaluate Your Roof

Most landlords only pay attention to the home’s interior and forget that water damage can also happen from the roof. A leak in your roof can work its way all down to the home’s foundation. Here, it can cause serious structural damage, including rot and decay.

Whether from inclement weather conditions, age, or anything else, leaks from the roof can cause more water damage than you’d expect.

Most roof experts agree that the roof of a rental property should be inspected at least once every six months. The following is a roofing inspection checklist.

  • Cracks in caulking
  • Rust spots on flashing
  • Buckling, blistering, or buckling shingles
  • Broken or missing shingles
  • Worn or cracked rubber boots around vent pipes
  • Growth of lichen or moss
  • Cracks on chimney

Maintain Any Gutters and Downspouts

The role of gutters and downspouts is to collect roof runoff and divert it away from a home. Doing so helps to prevent problems such as roof damage, flooding, and overall water damage in a home. But the opposite may also be true if they are clogged.

So, as you inspect the condition of the roof, don’t forget to examine your gutters and downspouts as well. Most professionals recommend you have your gutters cleaned at least once or twice yearly during the spring and fall seasons.

Invest in Insulation

Of course, it’s always a good idea to provide your tenants with some guidelines on how to care for their rented premises during the cold, winter season. Be that as it may, you can never be sure that they will strictly follow these rules resulting in tenant damage.

For this reason, you should consider insulating the water pipes. While the cost of quality insulation doesn’t come cheap, it’ll only be a fraction of what it’d cost you to fix damage resulting from burst pipes.

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Communicate With Your Tenants

As a landlord, maintenance issues are inevitable. So, to keep on top of this, it’s a good idea to maintain great communication lines with your tenants.

You should provide them with multiple channels of communication. Emails, texts, phone calls, and letters are a great way to stay in touch. You may even want to go that extra step and ask them which communication style they prefer.

Install a Catch Basin

Does water tend to pool around the base of your rental property and affect your curb appeal?

If it does, then you may need to install a catch basin. A catch basin will help control the flow of water and erosion during periods of heavy rainfall and seasonal changes.

Install a Water Detector

Water detection gadgets work by monitoring the patterns of water flow. Their operation is similar to how smoke or carbon monoxide detectors work. When there is a leakage, an alarm will go off and the device will immediately shut down the water supply.

Others operate via Wi-Fi to alert the property owner. In all cases, their goal is to notify the owner of a potential water leak before too much damage can be done.

water detection

Update Your Insurance Policy

You should ensure that your landlord’s insurance policy covers water damage. Also, as an additional precaution, pay attention to the type of water damage it covers.

Generally speaking, a landlord’s insurance policy will cover damage resulting from things like burst pipes, or any other sudden or accidental events. The only exception is if the damage results from negligence.

Hire a Property Management Company

Are you an out-of-state investor and are not able to respond to tenants’ maintenance problems? Or maybe, are you finding it difficult to respond to tenant’s maintenance issues as a result of a growing investment portfolio?

A professional property management company can help. So, responding to your tenants’ maintenance requests won’t be the only thing they can help you with. You can also count on a good company to market the property, screen prospects, collect rent payments, and more.

Bottom Line

There you have it, some tips on how to avoid water damage in your rental property. Should you need expert help, then look no further than Florida Property Management & Sales.

We have some of the most extensive property management experience in South Florida, having served hundreds of property owners since 1979. Contact us today for more information!