For most people, winter is a time for cheer and hot cocoa. However, for homeowners, winter is a nightmare for winter apartment maintenance. Studies show that 65% of homeowners under the age of 35 rent their homes.
Winter preparation is an essential part of an apartment maintenance routine. Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to get it right. If you’re prepping your apartment for the winter, you want to ensure you aren’t breaking any agreements on your lease.
So, how do you keep your apartment in good condition for the winter? This guide covers seven tips on winter apartment maintenance. Read on to find out more!
1. Protect Your Home From Unwanted Pests
Pests are the number one enemy of homeowners and tenants. The colder temperatures mean there will be more rodents, bugs, and other pests looking for shelter. Raccoons will often dig into your trash, seeking warmth and sustenance.
Pests are not only a health hazard. Rodents like mice, rats, and squirrels can damage wood and electrical wiring. As the weather gets colder, cleaning your home is essential to avoid unwanted guests.
Pests often prioritize food, so start by eliminating possible food sources. Take out the trash regularly and secure the garbage bin if possible. You also want to invest in sturdy, air-tight containers.
Don’t forget to wipe down food surfaces like the dining table and kitchen counter. This helps you eliminate food remnants like crumbs and discourages pests from entering your home.
2. Check Your Windows
Inspect your windows to ensure there aren’t any cracks on the interior or exterior of your window. Check the glass, sills, frames, and hardware. It’s best to do this before winter starts.
You also want to remove the window screens to prevent frost or snow buildup. Snow can warp or damage your window screen if left alone. If you get a decent amount of snowfall, you can also risk damaging the window structure or the window itself.
This can result in leaks, mold, and mildew. Caulking and installing weather stripping can provide extra protection for your windows against the cold weather. Ensure to remove any old caulking first before applying a new layer.
3. Address Plumbing Issues
Problems with plumbing are the last thing you want during the cold winter. A proactive approach can help prevent awkward conversations with your landlord about frozen pipes. Keep an eye on indoor air temperatures and follow your landlord’s instructions.
Most property owners and managers have a set requirement on temperature levels. Some property owners may require to keep the water running to prevent it from freezing. Letting your faucet drip warm water is essential when the temperatures drop dramatically.
It’s also best to avoid pouring solids, oil, or coffee grounds down your kitchen sink. This can solidify and clog your pipes. Remove hair from the drain or tub.
If you’re leaving your apartment for any reason, give your landlord a heads-up first. If you have an outdoor hose, shut off the valve. Drain the water completely before covering the bibs and storing them indoors.
Kitchen and bathroom pipes are most vulnerable to cold air when the cabinets are closed. Leave the cabinet doors open to let warm air circulate around the pipes. If you’re having plumbing issues, turn off the main water supply and call a professional plumber.
4. Keeping Warm for the Winter
Your HVAC system is your best friend during months of extreme temperatures, so be sure to take care of it! If your HVAC system isn’t working properly, you may feel the need to turn up the heat. If this is the case, you may be dealing with a problem with your unit.
This doesn’t only affect your comfort but can also bring up your monthly bill. Every few months, especially during winter, put some time into cleaning apartment appliances.
Your HVAC system needs proper airflow to work efficiently. Inspect the vents and clean up any dust or debris. You may also change the filters to prevent overworking your HVAC unit.
Even if your HVAC system is working fine, failing to clean dust or debris can damage your system later on. It also helps to ensure your thermostat is working as it should.
5. Don’t Neglect the Bathroom
No one wants to deal with a messy or stinky bathroom, especially during the cold winter. Excess moisture during the winter can mean more winter apartment maintenance, but it’s crucial not to neglect it. First, check your tiles to see if they need new grout.
Grout prevents water from seeping into your walls and floors. Broken or missing grout is often the primary suspect of mold and mildew in bathrooms.
You also want to expect your faucets, pipes and drains for leaks. Leaks can skyrocket your water bill and lead to damage like rotten boards or cracks in the foundation. Ensuring your bathroom is well-ventilated can also help reduce mold and mildew growth.
6. Clean Your Home Everyday
The cold weather can tempt you to laze around all day and neglect your daily chores. However, winter often means that you’ll be spending more time at home. That, in turn, means a higher chance of spills, splatters, and other food accidents that can dirty your apartment.
You don’t need to deep-clean your home every day. However, you must keep up with tasks like sweeping, mopping the floor, and wiping surfaces. If you don’t have apartment cleaning supplies, try alternative solutions in your kitchen.
Vinegar, dish soap, and baking soda are great cleaning products if you know how to use them well. Cleaning regularly will ensure your home stays cozy for the winter.
7. Know When to Call for Help
Preventing apartment repairs should be the main priority of every tenant. But sometimes, accidents happen, or damage creeps up on you.
It can be terrifying to call your landlord when you notice something is amiss in your home. You may not want to lose your deposit or make it seem like you aren’t a good tenant.
However, dealing with apartment issues alone can cost you more. Be honest and inform your landlord or property manager so they can handle the issue for you.
Winter Apartment Maintenance Tips Every Tenant Needs
Taking good care of your home can help you lower apartment maintenance costs in the long run. Use these winter apartment maintenance tips to keep your home clean and cozy for this cold season.
Are you a homeowner interested in property management services? That’s where we come in. Contact us today to learn more!