Monday, 18 February 2019

‘Winter checks’ are worth making

‘Winter checks’ are worth making

NOW the seasons are changing and the weather is turning — and with more changes on the way with the clocks “falling back” on Sunday (October 28) — it’s important to get your property ready for winter, writes Adrian Moody, head of lettings at Savills.

Taking the below steps before issues happen will help avoid stress for you and your tenants.

If your agent is managing your property they may be taking care of many things for you, give them a call to discuss.

Here are my top tips for landlords in the run-up to winter...

1. Lag all pipe work to reduce the risk of water pipes splitting or freezing. Don’t forget loft spaces, external cupboards, taps, garages and boiler rooms.

2. Make your property energy-efficient through insulation. Cavity wall insulation, draft excluders, floor insulation, loft insulation are some examples of how to keep your heat in your home.

3. Make sure your boiler and fireplace are ready for use. Boilers and fireplaces need regular servicing/
sweeping (check your health and safety responsibilities) to make sure they are in good working order — it also reduces the risk of breakdowns.

4. Smoke and carbon monoxide alarms need testing to make sure they are working. Regular testing of both of these is very important, a landlord must have a working smoke alarm on each habitable floor of the property and a carbon monoxide alarm in any room with a solid fuel appliance, for instance a working fireplace.

5. Burglar alarms are the most effective deterrent against burglars, so make sure your alarm is tested and ready.

6. After high winds it is important to assess any damage quickly. You should check for structural damage, missing tiles, damaged or poor pointing, cracked brickwork and render to make sure you nip any potential issues in the bud.

7. Keep an eye on the health of the property’s trees and large shrubs to reduce the risk of them causing damage. If there are large trees near the property or your neighbours’ properties, make sure you give them a health check and have them lopped if necessary to reduce the risk of them falling in high winds or storms.


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