Rental Property Maintenance Tips to Save You Money in the Long Run
Updated: Oct 19
Buying a rental property is a great way to earn passive income and start investing for your retirement. However, many first-time landlords are surprised at maintenance costs. With monthly, seasonal, preventative, and emergency maintenance costs, the number keeps adding up.
However, preparing beforehand and following a few tips can reduce maintenance costs. Even if they require expenditure up-front, they save you a lot during the long run. This article written by these community property managers delves into some maintenance tips that will save you money and maximize your rental income.
Invest in Green Energy
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, commercial buildings and homes use up 40% of the energy used in the entire country. On average, Americans pay $2000 for energy annually. Making your rental property more energy-efficient can help you save costs in the long run.
Equip your rental unit with energy-efficient lights to reduce your energy bill. Whether it’s installing energy-efficient lightbulbs, solar panels, or smart thermostats, these will make up for the up-front cost in the long run. Efficient lighting alone can reduce lighting energy costs by a startling 50%-75%. You can also invest in energy-efficient appliances such as refrigerators, washers, and dryers.
When you’re first furnishing your rental property, it’s tempting to look for budget appliances and fixtures. According to AustinVestors, keeping these costs low may come at a much higher cost in the long run. Instead of saving on these larger purchases, ensure you’re buying high-quality appliances and fixtures. These will last you much longer and may even need fewer repairs.
Make Landscaping More Efficient
You may not realize that landscaping is using up a lot of resources. You can save money in the long run by making your landscaping more efficient and less reliant on water. For example, you can pave over some grass or lay out artificial turf in some areas. To maintain greenery, you can also opt for planting less water-dependent plants to save money on your water bill. Without so much greenery to maintain, you can get rid of costly irrigation systems and water sprinklers and lower expenditure in the long run.
Ensure Preventative Maintenance
Preventative maintenance is a must for every rental unit. No matter how insignificant the problem may seem, it can evolve into something much bigger and cost even more money in the future. Putting off fixing a small leak, for example, may result in extensive water damage that may cost you thousands of dollars. According to CapMark Realty, putting off roof maintenance may result in storm damage or other roof damage. This can be very costly to repair and even more expensive to replace.
By keeping on top of maintenance, you prevent problems from getting worse. It’s essential to remember that basic preventative maintenance may cost money in the short term but will save you money in the long run. Instead of waiting for your tenants to call you with a problem, perform regular checkups to ensure there aren’t any.
Pay Attention to Water Usage
Water use can end up costing you a lot. You can save money on water bills by monitoring water use and keeping on top of repairs like leaks. In fact, what seems like a small leak may end up costing you a lot in water consumption. You can keep on top of this by having your property manager keep an eye on the water meter for any unusual activity. Regular checks and repairs will also ensure any leaks are quickly remedied and water wastage is kept at a minimum.
There are many water-efficient plumbing fixtures you can invest in to reduce the flow rate. For example, water-efficient showerheads cut down the flow rate by half and save you gallons of water in the long run without compromising quality or a good shower experience. Other examples include aerators and dual flushes, which also reduce water consumption. While it may seem expensive to replace fixtures, this will pay dividends in the long run.
Hire a Property Manager
Hiring a property manager may seem like an added expense, but it will save you a lot of time and money. In addition to you handing off your responsibilities to someone more experienced, you can ensure good advertising, lower vacancy rates, higher tenant retention, lower maintenance costs, timely rent collection, and benefit from many more advantages. Property managers can also handle the other tips we’ve mentioned for you to ensure things are in working order.
With inflation and costs rising across the country, it’s best to utilize tips and tricks to lower your expenditure and increase your profits. Use the cost-savings measures we’ve discussed to benefit from lower maintenance costs and save money in the long run.