4 Property Maintenance Mistakes That Could Make Your Worst Nightmares Come True

April 22, 2014

red flags

When it comes to property maintenance, it’s tempting to do whatever you can to save a few extra dollars. After all, maintenance costs can be overwhelming. But you should be warned about how it typically goes with maintenance charges: you can pay some now, or a lot later.

ABC Property Management takes property maintenance seriously. We are very careful about who we hire to maintain the properties we manage. As such, we have made a list of mistakes you or your property management team should avoid when it comes to hiring and working with your maintenance company.

1. DO NOT hire maintenance workers who do not have a license and insurance.

“What does a license and insurance matter? Pete does an awesome job!”

Danger zone. As skilled as Pete may be, a licensed and insured maintenance worker is essential.

Why does it matter? A license proves that the maintenance worker is legitimate and serious about their business. Also, when it comes to taxes, hiring someone with a license allows you to write off property maintenance expenditures.

Insurance is of major importance. If insured maintenance workers cause any damage to the property, their insurance will cover the costs, i.e. it will not come out of your pocket. So, don’t feel bad about being a stickler on something that protects you big time!

2. DO NOT rely on just one property maintenance team.

Sure, you might have your favorite maintenance man, but failing to develop a working relationship with other maintenance contractors comes with a very high risk. Consider the following two scenarios:

Scenario #1: You’ve got a massive leak that needs urgent attention. You call your dependable handyman who has never let you down. But it turns out he’s at the hospital tending to a very sick child.

Sure, you can call someone else, but you have no idea what they will charge or what their work will be like. Even worse, if they cut corners and don’t remedy the problem, you’re looking at a whole slew of costs and complications down the line.

Scenario #2: Times are tough for your maintenance man. He knows you don’t get bids from other maintenance workers and may hike up his prices on work to be done.

On the other hand, if you have other people on whom you can depend, you are able to get multiple bids and have the work done at a more competitive rate.

3. DO NOT expect your maintenance worker to be psychic.

Yes, you read that right. While maintenance workers can typically make a decent assessment of the work and costs required for property maintenance and repair, the unexpected can still crop up. For example, while doing an inexpensive repair on a leak under a sink, your maintenance guy might discover that the leak has been an ongoing issue and has caused sub-floor rot and mold.

It might be hard to swallow that a $50 maintenance job has suddenly escalated into a repair upwards of $400. It’s no one’s fault, even if your maintenance worker originally led you to believe otherwise.

The moral of the story: expect the unexpected so that you can budget for it!

4. DO NOT fail to ask property maintenance workers for references.

You need to try your hardest to ensure quality property maintenance from the outset. The first step is hiring workers who are qualified to maintain your investment.

Ask each maintenance company for client references. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau to discover if any negative feedback on the company has been reported.

Work with ABC Property Management

Maintaining your investment property is of utmost importance. An ill-maintained property affects its longevity, your ROI, tenant relations . . . the list goes on and on.

Contact us to learn more about how our property management team can ensure that your real estate investment will stay in top notch condition and generate a rewarding return.