As a HMO landlord in England how often are you carrying out inspections on your properties? If you’re managing a large portfolio, your answer might be, “not often enough.” Yet regular property health checks are crucial for maximising your long-term profits and for protecting your investment.
The Importance of HMO Property Health Checks
You should carry out a HMO property health check at least once each quarter, and ideally, once monthly. While this sounds like hard work, it’s well worth putting in the effort, since regular property health checks will ensure any problems are identified at an early stage and can be dealt with quickly and more affordably.
Regular HMO property health checks will save you money and time and keep your tenants happier. Happy tenants stay around for longer and are also more likely to be tolerant when you need to increase their rent.
It’s also important to note that you have health and safety obligations as a HMO landlord to carry out certain regular checks, and your insurer will need to know you’re implementing inspections too.
With this in mind, it makes sense to visit your properties regularly to make sure everything is running smoothly.
So, what do you need to check during these routine health checks?
The Exterior of The Property
- Check the roof regularly. Check the slip tiles, ridged tiles, and the flashing to find out whether anything requires attention. If there’s a chimney stack, check that too as damage to the pointing and flashing can result in leaks.
- Damage to the downpipes and guttering can result in dampness inside the property, so make sure to check for any problems. At least some of your checks should be carried out in poor weather so you can see how well they’re functioning. Ensure, too, that the drains don’t back up in rainy weather.
- The fascia boarding and external timbers should be checked for rot, while the masonry, render, and pointing of both the property and its boundary walls also require checks for cracks and damage.
- Check the doors and windows to ensure they’re in good condition.
The Interior of The Property
- Check to ensure the tenants are caring for the property by making sure the floors and surfaces are generally clean and tidy.
- Test the doors and windows to ensure the hinges and locking mechanisms are functioning correctly.
- Look for any visual signs of damp and use a damp meter so you can identify any potential issues before they get out of hand. Make sure there’s no mould building up in any of the rooms.
- Make sure there are no gaps or cracks in the sealant surrounding the worktops, sinks, and baths. Check that there are no leaks from taps, isolator valves, or shower waste traps.
- If the property has a basement, check it visually to make sure everything seems in good order.
- Check that furniture is all in a good condition, with no loose screws or nails.
General HMO Checks
- Make sure your or your HMO property manager’s emergency information and details are clearly visible within the property.
- Test your fire detection system (don’t forget to record the test) and visually inspect any emergency lights you have.
- Check there is a fire blanket in place in the kitchen.
- Ensure all fire escapes are clear.
- Carry out a visual PAT inspection, and look at sockets, switches, and wiring as well as the lamps and light fittings you’ve provided to ensure they’re safe and functioning correctly.
- Ensure the property has its carbon monoxide detector in place and that it works correctly.
- Check the boiler pressure to determine whether it requires topping up.
These simple HMO property health checks, when carried out regularly, will help you save time, effort, and money in the long run.
Since it can be time-consuming and stressful to carry out these checks frequently, especially if you have a large property portfolio, it makes sense to rely on a trusted HMO property management company like The HMO Network.
Our expert team will handle all aspects of HMO property management on your behalf to maximise your investment.
Contact us today on 01245 835859 or at email@example.com find out how we can help.