Semi-Annual Maintenance for Busy Landlords

You’ve probably heard me say this many times before, however Maintenance will make you or break you as a self-managing landlords. In fact, the #1 reason why tenants move is due to maintenance, or lack thereof.

With the changing of the seasons, comes ensuring your rental inspection checklist gets your rental ready for winter or cooler weather. It’s important, especially when it comes to preventing burst pipes.

Even if you have an annual inspection you do on your rentals, getting in there every 6 months or so is not only good for ensuring tenants are maintaining your property properly, but it also ensures your investment is prepped and prepared for weather!

Of course, every landlord inspection will vary depending on who the landlord is, what responsibilities they have for maintaining the property, and what type of rental property they have. 

Before you walk through the unit, make sure you give your tenant proper notice of the inspection. In Ontario that is 24 hours written walk through the unit, either you’re your own or with them. Inspections can be daunting, not only for you but also for the tenant as well. Some have been burned by previous landlords so be up front with them and tell them what you’re looking for. We’re looking for holes in the wall, not scratches and scuffs on the floor.

Here are a list of things a landlord should be looking for in their semi-annual walkthrough:

  • Furnace filters
  • Smoke batteries
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Bugs/pests
  • Water leaks (sink, toilet, faucet, roof)
  • Water damage (walls, ceiling, floor)
  • Running toilets
  • Window/door seals
  • Any appliances
  • Overall cleanliness/condition of property

Inspection Checklist For Winter:

Winter should primarily focus on preventing chilly drafts, holiday fires, and frozen pipes and ensuring you or your tenant is stocked up on snow shovels and sidewalk salt.

  • Clean/replace furnace filters
  • Sidewalk shovel and salt
  • Check window/door seals to prevent drafts
  • Takedown/store any AC units (if applicable)
  • Check smoke alarms

Inspection Checklist For Spring:

Summer should primarily focus on how to keep your rental property cool and ensuring your rental property hasn’t received any damage from large snowfalls, gusty winter chills, or melting ice.

  • Undo everything you did for winter prep
  • Install AC units in windows/designated areas
  • Clean/replace AC filters
  • Check seals in windows and doors
  • Check roof/siding for any winter damage
  • Check sidewalk for cracks from frozen/melting snow
  • Check ceiling for water damage from melting snow

When formulating your 6-month or annual landlord inspection checklist, account for ways you can weatherize your rental property to keep it routinely maintained, inspected, and prepped for whatever weather!

Additionally, checking for water-related damage, any furnace or AC filters, smoke alarms, window and door seals, roof damage, or sidewalk issues are good for landlords to add to their inspection checklist for rental properties to ensure common issues—like melting snow causing water leaks—are immediately rectified to prevent further or worsening damage.

Welcome Home also has a Spring/Winter Ready Preventative Maintenance Program available to self-managing landlords. If this is something you might be interested, feel free to reach out and let us help you take this off of your to-do list.