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Autumn is just around the corner, and while we might love the season for its cosy jumpers and crisp, sunny days, this time of year can cause all sorts of problems for your property. Fortunately there’s still time to prepare, so if you’re a landlord wanting to get your rental property ready for the colder months, read on to discover 4 key jobs you can do right now.

1. Clear out drains and gutters

Now is a great time to check that all the drains and gutters on your property are working properly. You can do this by walking around the property and looking for any signs of leaks or blockages: puddles, stained walls, smelly drains, blocked sinks, internal damp. To be really thorough, you can even run a hosepipe into your gutter and make sure the water is being funnelled where it needs to go. If you think you might have an issue with drainage, call an expert to take a look at it – it’s better to solve these problems early on, before they come really bad and potentially cost you more money and time.

2. Service the boiler

As a landlord, it’s up to you to make sure the property has a good, functioning heating system, so if you haven’t had the boiler serviced in a while, now would be a great time to do it. It is recommended that you service your boiler once a year, and if you’re worried about any potentially large problems, many insurance companies offer specialist boiler cover for landlords. Again, making sure that the central heating is working well before the weather turns really cold will mean your tenants and your property are protected during the winter.

3. Inspect your roof

Just like drains and gutters, maintaining the roof of a rental property is the responsibility of the landlord. You will want to make sure that your roof is ready for the winter, especially if the property is in an area that is prone to heavy snow or strong winds. You may be able to see any major roof problems from the ground with a pair of binoculars, or from inside the property, but it may be worth using a ladder to take a closer look, or investing in an official roof inspection if you aren’t able to check it yourself. If you do check the roof, keep an eye out for broken or missing tiles, ageing sealant or cracked mortar on the chimney – these will all need to be repaired to keep your property watertight.

4. Upgrade your insulation

If you’ve been considering upgrading the insulation in your property, autumn is your last opportunity to do it before the end of the year without really affecting the comfort of your tenants. Improving the insulation will not only help to protect your property against very cold weather, it will also make the property more energy efficient, which is eco-friendly and will save your tenants money on their heating bills. This year is a particularly great time to do this, because homeowners and landlords will be able to apply for the Green Homes Grant Scheme, which could pay for up to two-thirds of the cost of your insulation upgrade, up to a maximum of £5,000. The scheme will open at the end of this month, and you can check your eligibility here.

Do you have a property to let in Bristol? Gough Quarters can guide you through the entire rental process, so contact us today to find out how we can help you.

Cover photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash

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