Property maintenance is an integral aspect of rental property management. In this section, we share guides, top tips and blogs that will help you navigate your obligations as a rental property owner or someone looking to rent. After all, a well maintained and healthy home creates a better rental experience for everyone.
With spring just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about what maintenance your rental property is in need of.
As we edge closer towards summer, it’s a great time to take a look at any properties you own and consider what maintenance work needs to be carried out.
We explore key considerations that rental property owners and customers should make before signing a tenancy agreement.
As a general rule, we recommend carrying out an inspection one month after the rental customer moves in and then routine inspections every 90 days following. It’s also worth checking your insurance policy as they often outline how frequently you need to inspect your rental property.
This largely depends on who or what caused the damage. If rental customers or their guests carelessly or intentionally cause damage to the property, they will likely be liable for the cost of the damage limited to the four weeks rent or the property owners insurance excess, whichever is the lower amount. However, if the damage is fair wear and tear, fixing it will be the responsibility of the rental owner. If you feel unsure, it’s always best to check with a professional or Tenancy Services. Feel free to get in touch with your local Quinovic office to discuss your property maintenance concerns.
This age-old question has been the cause of much discussion over the years. The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) does not outline who is responsible for replacing or even supplying light bulbs. We recommend discussing this at the start of any tenancy and noting what both parties agree in the tenancy agreement. Best practise is for the landlord to provide new light bulbs at the start of the tenancy with the tenant responsible for any replacements.
Determining which party is responsible for which task can be confusing. Check out our free e-book ‘the owner’s guide to property maintenance’ for a comprehensive list of common tasks and who is responsible for maintaining them in accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act 1986 (RTA).
Maintenance requests should be responded to promptly and repairs carried out as soon as possible. If a rental property owner does not act on a maintenance request that then escalates into a more significant issue, this could void any consequential insurance claims and create friction in relationships with rental customers. It’s also easy for something small to grow into a larger problem, so it’s best to act swiftly and be transparent with rental customers about repair timelines.
This largely depends on the location, age, condition and type of property you own, as well as the building materials used. As a rule of thumb, some property managers recommend putting aside 1% of the value of your property to cover repair and maintenance costs for the year. To get the best gauge of expected costs, you could book an inspection with a certified building inspector and ask for their professional opinion of any maintenance issues that they think your property is likely to experience. Then you can research the associated costs and prepare yourself for potential expenses.
Principal of Quinovic Palmerston North, Simon Tavendale discusses the importance of health and safety when planning property maintenance.