Published on : August 9, 2021 10:10
How to protect your rental property from storms and floods
Recent storms have battered areas up and down the country, leading to flooding and damage to property. With the unpredictability of the British weather seemingly one of the largest traits known to the nation, it’s more important than ever to ensure your tenants and rental property are protected at all costs.
Torrential weather conditions, such as heavy wind and excessive rainfall, have an evident ability to cause staggering amounts of damage to property. Consequentially, this leads to a spike in housing insurance claims.
High winds frequently lead to roof tiles being blown from properties, which in turn can create water ingress and further damaging costs. Heavy rain, which can lead to flooding, has the proven ability to create huge amounts of damage to furnishings, carpets and also electrics.
As a landlord, the safety and wellbeing of your tenants in your property are paramount. Budgeting to fix any issues caused by horrendous weather conditions is always advisable, particularly as the costs can spiral ludicrously depending on the damage. Insurance can be a saving grace in these circumstances, but landlords need to have it in the first place.
What can landlords do to weatherproof their properties?
Typically, the winter period is the most challenging for properties. The snow and icy temperatures can wreak havoc with plumbing and heating, which can lead to extremely uncomfortable conditions for your tenants. Both rain and wind are frequent weather conditions, leaving your property exposed to potential harm and needing funds to be repaired. Whilst landlords should be wary of ensuring their property is protected from weather conditions all year round, targeting any works to be complete prior to the start of winter is ideal.
- Prepare in advance
Any last minute works or emergency call-outs from a maintenance contractor to your property, prior to a severe spike in weather, can potentially mean work isn’t carried out. Any larger works should be planned and carried out over the summer months (where possible) as the weather is typically calmer (although this is the UK, so this can’t always be guaranteed). Some of the works that ideally should be carried out over the summer periods include:- Securing objects in gardens and yard spaces, such as fence panels and outdoor furniture.
– Check for larger, vulnerable objects that could topple onto your property, such as trees. Can these be removed or secured/fixed into place?
– Check for possible water ingress opportunities. Cracked roof tiles or a damaged roof is an unwelcome invite for water to breach your property.
– Check windows and doors to ensure they close properly and aren’t likely to escape their fittings, ensuring protection from water and snow ingress.
- Communicate with your tenants
Communication is critical with your tenants in order to establish and maintain a happy, long-lasting tenancy; especially when it comes to maintenance. It is much easier to ensure your property is maintained and weatherproofed by informing and securing access with the tenant beforehand prior to carrying out any works. By being open and transparent about the nature of the works to your tenant, not only will they feel happy about the communication, but also rest assured that you are demonstrating care by ensuring the works are carried out before and not during any severe weather spells. Establishing a clear and transparent communication channel also benefits you, as it means tenants are more likely to report issues that can escalate and become increasingly costly. This allows you to proactively respond to issues before they can be compromised by any extreme weather conditions.
- Make frequent inspections
A vital method of determining what maintenance work needs carrying out is by conducting thorough property inspections. By carrying out regular inspections, you can monitor any issues that may require immediate work, or find problems that are not urgent but may still need remedies prior to extensive periods of unfavourable weather. These inspections should be carried out frequently enough to monitor any potential maintenance issues, but not to the extent they become intrusive to the tenants. Communication with tenants is critical before any inspection takes place.
When it comes to protecting your property from any hazardous weather conditions, prevention is better than the cure. Your property is undoubtedly an expensive asset, and taking care of both it and your tenants is vital. As part of Edward Mellor’s property management, we can offer you a wealth of experience when it comes to monitoring a property and being able to highlight any potential issues; as well as working alongside a team of meticulous and committed contractors who can carry out any work to rectify these potentially costly issues problems. Most importantly, we’ll also communicate with your tenants every step of the way, to ensure they are happy and increase the longevity of your tenancy.
For more information, call our property management team on 0161 443 4777.