Preventive Maintenance Strategies: Protecting Your Multi-Family Investment

Building a new multi-family community, whether one building or a dozen, is a significant investment. Each residential unit is an independent generator of revenue and, together, they comprise a powerful source of income. Of course, this relies on your multi-family developments sustaining the same value as when construction is completed. The bright, welcoming features, high-quality living environments, and luxurious amenities are what draw new tenants and justify higher rents which allow the property to efficiently ROI.

Naturally, you want to protect your investment, and the best way to do that is with proactive maintenance. Most property investors implement a comprehensive annual and multi-year maintenance schedule. This will help you address maintenance with such efficiency that the property will never gain the opportunity to show signs of age or wear.

Let this schedule provide a glimpse of the preventative maintenance that should be used to preserve the beauty, living quality, and revenue potential of your multi-family developments.


Live Monitoring

  • Power Consumption
  • Water Consumption
  • Natural Gas (If Applicable)
  • Security
  • Disaster Alarms

The latest in utility monitoring technology makes it possible to take note of the amount of power, water, and natural gas flowing into your multi-family property. This type of monitoring can alert you to dangerous leaks immediately so that repairs occur before real damage can take place.

Security monitoring is only natural to include, but don’t forget that wifi disaster alarms such as smoke, CO2, and flood detectors can also ensure swift response to protect your property.


Every 6 Months

  • Shared Space Safety Audits
  • Security System Inspection
  • HVAC Cleaning and Tune-Ups
  • Major Landscaping and Pest Control
  • Pool and Amenity Maintenance
  • Seasonal Maintenance

Several types of maintenance should be addressed seasonally or at least every 6 months. Pool and landscaping maintenance in Houston, Texas typically follows a two-season cycle (summer and winter). It is also wise to conduct 6-month audits of things like property safety (ex: loose steps and hand rails), the security system, and any other seasonal concerns like cleaning the gutters.

Consider major storm cleanup also to fall into seasonal or 6-month maintenance. But you may want a separate post-storm checklist for Houston multi-family properties.


Annual Preventative Multi-Family Maintenance

  • Building Exterior Inspection and Repairs
    • Siding
    • Gutters
    • Rooftops
  • Parking Lot Inspection and Repairs
  • Tenant Utility and Appliance Survey
  • Flush and Descale Water Heaters
  • Fridge Coil Cleanings
  • Residential Unit Inspections

There are many tasks that should be completed once a year, but they don’t all need to take place within the same month. Fully inspect your property, including the building exterior, roof, gutters, and parking lots.

Most tenants are used to annually scheduled residential inspections. This is also a good time to schedule annual HVAC, water heater, and refrigerator maintenance, which will increase both their performance and lifespans.


Tenant Turnover Maintenance

  • Deep Cleaning Service
  • Steam Clean Carpets
  • Repaint Walls and Cabinets
  • New LED Light Bulbs
  • Smoke Detector / CO2 Detector Batteries
  • Appliance and Utility Performance Check
  • Inspection and Spot Repairs
  • Overtime Unit Updates

Any time a tenant moves out -whether they stayed for one year or ten – go through the tenant turnover maintenance checklist. This is your chance to fully deep-clean and refresh the unit. You can give it a full maintenance overhaul and make it feel brand new for the next tenant.

If you have been updating units and this one is due, schedule those renovations or appliance upgrades, as well.


Every 2 Years

  • Parking Lot Re-Striping and Signage
  • Stone Countertop Re-Sealing
  • Check Pipe Insulation

There are several maintenance tasks that need to be performed approximately every two years. These include re-striping your parking lot, re-sealing any stone countertops (ex: marble, granite, soapstone, etc), and checking on the utilities.

If Houston were a colder climate, this would be where we’d remind you to check and update the pipe insulations. But the coastal metropolis rarely sees temperatures cold enough to burst a pipe in the winter.


Every 5 Years

  • Residential Appliance Upgrades
  • Shared Amenity Upgrades
  • Parking Lot Fresh Seal-Coat
  • Repaint the Exterior

Multi-family architecture needs certain maintenance steps about every 5 years, as well. The parking lot asphalt will need a new sealcoat, and it will be about time to repaint the exterior to keep it looking beautiful. This is also a good time to check for cracks and have them repaired before they grow.

If you want the residential lifestyle to remain competitive, 5 years is about the right pace to upgrade residential appliances, and schedule at least one major upgrade to the shared amenities every 5 years.


Every 10-25 Years

  • New Roof Installation
  • New HVAC Installations (Residential and Shared Spaces)
  • New Water Heater Installations
  • Parking Lot Repaving

Then there are the long-term preventative maintenance steps. Putting these on your calendar will ensure that you never overlook something truly important that might put your investment at risk.

Every 15-20 years, you’ll need new rooftops. The exact timing will depend on whether you have shingled or flat commercial roofs and what the recent tropical storms have wrought.

Every 10-15 years, you’ll want to install new water heaters and HVACs for both residential and shared spaces, but they don’t have to be upgraded all at once.

Every 20-25 years, you’ll need to repave the parking lot with fresh asphalt or concrete – even if you’ve been on-the-ball repairing cracks as they appear.


Protecting Your Multi-Family Investments in the Long-Term

Preventative maintenance and proactive care of your newly built properties is the best way to see your multi-family developments generating profits and providing high-quality lifestyles for decades into the future. You should be enjoying profits from your recent construction long after the project ROIs with the simple implementation of comprehensive asset management and maintenance scheduling.

For more insights on how to get the most from your multi-family architecture, from the initial design to long-term value, contact us today!

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