Property Management Blog
Property Maintenance is Part of Long-Term Success for Rental Owners
It may feel painful to part with your money, but not keeping up rental home maintenance is a big
mistake. The best renters love living in single-family homes that look updated from the outside.
Who doesn’t enjoy arriving home to a freshly painted front door or a home that looks clean and modern before you even step inside? If the home you’re trying to lease out has stained concrete and old windows, you’re going to get less rental income every month.
We’ve discussed the power of replacing interior items here. Now let’s talk about what exterior items need replenishing.
These Small Changes Can Work Like Magic
Some exterior items can be switched out at a low cost, and sometimes a cleanup is all that’s needed. Replacing window screens is a good example of an inexpensive fix on a home. Updating exterior light fixtures is another task that can identify your home as updated and ready for occupants.
Never underestimate the impact of power washing your investment property. Cleaning away dirt build-up will usually return the original surface to its like new glory. Greyish brick can become a lovely natural stone color. That green algae that’s spread across the front of your house can be washed away. Make sure you work with a knowledgeable power washing company who understands which materials can benefit from a powerful washer and which ones will not.
Keep these exterior items and surfaces clean:
Big Ticket Items Increase Curb Appeal
You’ll make more income when you ensure your investment property meets current esthetics. That doesn’t mean it has to look like a remodel from HGTV. It does mean it has to look welcoming.
The value of replacing big items will surprise you. Items such as garage doors, windows, fences, patios, and decks should be replaced once they look outdated. This may seem costly at first, but many of today’s products are designed to hold up for years longer (many years longer in some cases) than the original ones you need to replace.
How long do exterior items last?
High-quality vinyl windows can last up to as many as 40 years, but cheap vinyl windows can need to be replaced as soon as 15 years. (Yes, really.) New garage doors can look great for as long as 15 to 20 years. The lifespan of garge doors has a lot to do with the quality and how they are used and maintained.
When it comes to wood products, you’ll need to upgrade more frequently. Cedar is the best wood for fences, then pine, then spruce. Cedar, when regularly maintained, can look great for up to 30 years. Pine starts to flag at about five to 10 years. Spruce starts to fall apart in as little as four years.
Concrete that’s been sealed correctly can stay in good shape for as much as 30 years on a single-family home. The surrounding landscape can shorten that lifespan when tree roots grow under driveways, sidewalks, and patios. A concrete surface that’s kept clean and free of motor oil and stains will look good even with cracks.
Things to Remember About Exterior Home Products
Upgrading exterior items isn’t always about appearance. There are instances when it’s a safety matter. Cracked concrete and rotting wood are not safe to walk across, and you can’t expect tenants to live in an unsafe environment. Your state's landlord laws may have safety standards you must follow.
The climate and the product’s materials will affect the useful life of these items. Humidity, unusual storm activity, and even very dry weather can have an effect on replacement needs. Poor quality materials will deteriorate more quickly and can develop hidden damage over time.
Check with manufacturers about the life span of their products in your part of the country. Trusted manufacturers and installers will have this information already or be happy to find out for you.
How Can We Help?
Your long-term success is dependent on a great property management plan. The team at Tyson Properties is here to help you keep up with maintenance needs and make decisions that work for you regarding product upgrades and replacements. Call us today 505-323-2104 to speak with our licensed property management team.
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