*** Important winter MESSAGE FOR TENANTS AND LANDLORDS
Winter Property Preparations are essential and at this time of year, we find it helpful to give some advice to tenants and landlords to try to prevent burst pipes due to extreme weather conditions. Bursts often happen due to some tenants not being aware or duly diligent of “tenant duty to protect the property from frost damage” as per clauses in the tenancy agreement.
Tenants winter property preparations:
Should we experience another frosty winter, please ensure that you do the following:-
- Keep the heat on (* As per advice by homeserve). Keeping your home heated during a very cold snap is essential to prevent burst pipes. You can set your timer to constant or 24 hours and use your thermostat to maintain some warmth through the night and while you’re out. This doesn’t mean that you are blasting out heat unnecessarily as your thermostat will control it – it is often found to be a more cost effective way of heating your house rather than just having heat on high for a couple of hours. Remember – it is your responsibility to protect the property from frost damage.
***This applies if you are leaving the property vacant during the day, overnight or for vacation periods.***
- Check the boiler pressure on the boiler regularly – this is a preventative measure to assess if there is a leak. Report immediately if the pressure is dropping regularly.
- Ensure that the outside pipes are turned off at the stop tap if possible. Insulating them is also a preventative method.
- Keep your eye on gutters and drainpipes – should you see any overflow or collection of water, please report to Stuarts as soon as possible.
- Report any repair issues immediately to Stuarts Property Services Ltd on 0161 491 1411 or by using our Report a Repair button on our website
- You are responsible for all of your own possessions and we suggest that you consider insuring your possessions to protect them
- Make sure you know where your stop tap is in the event of a burst and check regularly that you can turn it off easily in an emergency. It’s handy to label it so you remember where it is in a panic.
The above noted fall under tenants’ responsibility, not the landlords and you may be charged for repairs if you have neglected to protect the property.
Landlords winter property preparations:
Preparation of the property before the winter onset
If your property is on our full management service, we advise all current tenants of their responsibilities and to follow our winter preparations. If your property is under our full management service but currently empty, we will ensure that the heating is on during the winter period and lag pipes where applicable. Whilst we do this as a preventative method, Stuarts Property Services cannot be held responsible for any damage occurrence. As a landlord, it is your overall responsibility. Have you informed / updated Stuarts Property Services Ltd of your provider and level of cover information to keep on file?
If you are a Let-Only Landlord, it is recommended that you communicate with your tenants to check that they are prepared in the event of frosty weather, or for you to consider if it is currently empty. It is your overall responsibility and below is a list for you to consider too:
- Is the property prepared for a cold winter?
- Is the property vacant at all over the cold period? If so,
- Does your insurance protect you in the event of a problem?
Buildings and/or Contents Insurance (including landlord liability)
* Does the property/properties that you let have buildings insurance? (Buildings Insurance may be included in your service charge to the block management company if your property is an apartment)
* Does the property /properties that you let have contents insurance? – The fixtures and fittings such as carpets, fitted wardrobes, kitchen units may come under this section of your insurance and in the event of a flood or water damage you may not be covered – it is always advisable to check!
* Do you have landlord liability insurance with your current provider?
During the festive season of Christmas and New Year, We have some closure days – these are noted on our contact us page. Should you find that our offices are closed and you have an emergency, go to our Emergency Contact page to find our emergency contractor details. You can also leave a message out of hours on our answering machine if we are not available; remote access to the telephones to attend to any emergencies is also conducted sporadically. Please be aware that if your call out to the property is not deemed as an emergency by our contractors then you will be charged for the call out. Please therefore assess the situation before calling out our engineers.