The winters in Montana are severe. While you can look after your home during the colder months because you’re living there, you should prepare your rental property in advance. Falling to prepare the units you rent out—and educate your tenants—could spell disaster once the temperature drops.
3 Steps for Preparing Rental Property for Winter
1. Close Foundation Vents
Crawl space vents allow air to circulate underneath the floors of homes. This is crucial during the summer months when the wind is humid because moisture buildup will contribute to mold and mildew. During the winter months, the air is much dryer. As such, closing the foundation vents is advised before the temperature drops. This will keep the crawl space warm, thereby preventing the pipes from freezing.
2. Arrange Snow Removal
Every city has requirements for residents when it comes to snow removal. In Kalispell, MT, for example, owners or occupiers are responsible for clearing snow from the sidewalk in front of their homes within 72 hours. They must also handle snow removal for all private property, like driveways. Regardless of whether you plan on shoveling or your tenants will take care of it, state your expectations in clear, concise terms in the lease agreement.
3. Establish Thermostat Expectations
Burst pipes are a common problem in cold climates. To prevent extensive water damage in your rental units, make sure tenants agree to set the thermostat to at least 55 degrees before leaving for the holidays. This will ensure the pipes stay warm enough that water continues flowing through them all winter long.
If you own rental property in Kalispell, MT, turn to All Pro Flathead Property Management for help maintaining it. Since 1981, this full-service property manager has been assisting clients with all facets of property ownership. From screening tenants and showing units to drafting leases and collecting rent, they do it all. To learn more about their management services, visit their website or call (406) 755-1102.