Owning a property entails many responsibilities. In addition to the financial commitment of a mortgage, taxes, utilities, and insurance, there is also the duty of property maintenance. Whether you intend to sell your property or not, consistent and thorough maintenance is a crucial investment and can help save you money.
Many property owners are unaware that they must maintain their property as a condition of their home or business insurance policy. The majority of insurance policies specifically state that "neglect" or "failure to properly maintain the property" will cause problems if damage occurs. In simple terms, things that fail or break due to “neglect” are not covered by your insurance policy.
Your property will have multiple areas that need maintenance for 2023, some of which may be obvious and others which are not. However, the majority of areas can be addressed with simple routine checks. With these consistent checks and maintenance, you can help prevent costly and frustrating issues from occurring.
The Importance of Property Maintenance
Routine, preventative, corrective, and cosmetic maintenance are all simple ways to manage the upkeep of your property. We have seen it all as public adjusters, and we are aware of the value and significance of property maintenance.
Regular maintenance will decrease the likelihood that you will ever need to make an insurance claim. However, we are here to assist you if you ever find yourself in a position where you must make that decision.
Here are five quick and inexpensive items to add to your maintenance checklist:
#1 Maintain Trees and Large Shrubs
You should cut off any loose branches and check the condition of the trees you have around your property before they have a chance to cause damage. Any trees that appear to be unstable, should have their trunks anchored to the ground or completely removed before that unexpected storm hits.
In fact, if you own property in Florida, you probably realize how critical tree trimming is, especially before hurricane season. Although it might not be the most glamorous chore on your maintenance list, this straightforward task can help avoid hurricane debris damage as well as diminish the chance of pest problems.
#2 Check Window Seals and Doors
Your window seals can deteriorate just like any other component of your home. Every year, check the seals on your windows and doors. You can lessen the stress on your HVAC systems and lengthen their lifespan by making sure that every area of your property is properly sealed. This will also help prevent weather-driven rain from damaging your property through cracks or gaps in windows or doors.
#3 Keep Your HVAC Systems Clean
Maintaining your HVAC system is another crucial item for your 2023 maintenance checklist. It’s a good idea to have your HVAC system checked and cleaned twice a year while the lines should always be cleared, and the filter should be changed every one to two months.
It is also a good idea to add fans in your kitchen and baths if you do not already have them installed. By doing so, you can lessen the likelihood of mold growth by reducing the amount of moisture that accumulates inside your home as well as contribute to good air flow for your HVAC system.
#4 Check Plumbing and Drainage Systems
Checking your plumbing and drainage systems is another important item to put on your maintenance checklist. Numerous factors, including roots and deposit buildup, can damage your plumbing, causing unexpected water damage at inconvenient times.
Check for leaks on a regular basis under your kitchen sink cabinet and bathroom vanity cabinets. You may choose to partner with a qualified plumber to design a maintenance schedule if you need assistance with correctly maintaining your plumbing and drainage system.
#5 Clean Refrigerator Coils
At least once a year, cleaning refrigerator coils with a vacuum will help keep your refrigerator operating efficiently. You would simply remove the front panel and vacuum any dust, dirt, or pet hair as these coils are typically located at the bottom of the refrigerator where these elements like to collect. Consult your owner’s manual if you don't know where the coils on your specific unit are located.
Property Maintenance and Prevention
When it comes to upkeep and repairs, there are areas of a property that require more focus than others. Preventative measures and yearly maintenance will go a long way towards keeping your property safe and functioning properly.
Making a yearly maintenance checklist is a preventative measure you can use to make sure your property is in tip-top shape. If you are unsure of which areas of your property need upkeep, you may want to engage a specialist to conduct a thorough assessment and identify any potential problems.
At Reliant Insurance Adjusters we can assist you. Whether you need make a list of improvements, or document the current condition of your property before or after a loss. To find out how we can help, contact us for more information.