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Part 3: The Inevitable, ‘Every-Day’ Maintenance Issues

Dec 10, 2012 9:52:27 AM

The 3rd installment of our series, “So, You Want to be a Landlord?” focuses on 'every-day' maintenance.

At this point, your Property Management Company has prepped the home, the “break-in” issues have been addressed following the move-in, and now those inevitable, every-day maintenance issues will arise. You know, the drippy faucet, the leaky drain line, the back-left burner on the kitchen stove that suddenly stops working.

Yes, maintenance WILL be needed on your property. Whether it’s a new home, an old home or somewhere in between, industry statistics show that Landlords should budget as much as 20% of their yearly rental income to pay for maintenance issues. Yes, 20%.

In addition, Owners of rental property should have at least 3 months of rent in “reserve” to pay for unexpected repairs. Owners who have no reserves and need every dime of their rent to pay the mortgage, will quickly become frustrated, not to mention become likely victims of foreclosure.

We devote a lot of time and resources to managing maintenance. We have an internal tech we use for day-to-day maintenance, as well as dozens of local contractors to help service our properties.

Ensuring your property is maintained to a safe and comfortable condition is a key to long-term Tenant satisfaction and the overall well-being of the rental property.

Clearly, screening maintenance requests is an important part of what we do. In fact, we’ve found that some requests can be handled easily over the phone with some basic troubleshooting. However, if maintenance is needed on the property, we dispatch qualified technicians to handle the issue.

Again, spending money on maintenance is a basic reality of owning rental property. Adequate reserves and the proper expectation of maintenance expenses are key components of a Landlord’s success.

Money spent to repair issues will prove to be a wise investment for your property and overall Tenant satisfaction.

Check out Part 4: Reacting to Emergency Maintenance. 

Jeremy Tallman

Written by Jeremy Tallman

Jeremy is the President and Managing Broker for T&H Realty Services. He has been active in the Central Indiana real estate market since 2000 and leads one of the most successful single-family property management companies in the state.

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