Tips to Maintain Your Vacant Properties – Shoutout OPM Group

There are times when you need to leave your home empty. It could be because you are moving but are yet to sell your house, you’re going away on an extended holiday, or you are carrying out major renovation works, which means the property is uninhabitable for a certain period of time. Whatever the reason, you’ll want to protect your home while it is vacant. An unoccupied home is at greater risk of theft and vandalism than an occupied one. Luckily there are things you can do to protect and safeguard your empty home.

  • Check the locks

First and foremost, be sure to lock all windows and doors in your home before moving out. While this may sound obvious, it’s actually very easy to forget to check the locks in the midst of a chaotic and stressful move. Most people moving out of a home are not only in a hurry to get to their new place, but are also busy directing movers or loading a truck. Double checking the locks can easily fall to the bottom of the to-do list. However, it’s one of the most important (if not, the most important) step you can take to protect your home when moving to a new house. Wherever you are heading, make sure all locks are in good working order and locked – that includes windows, sheds, garages and any other outbuildings.

  • Plumbing

Check all plumbing fixtures for proper drainage and leaks.  Flush all toilets.  Note:  If you don’t do this and the pipes dry up, noxious gasses from the sewer may enter.  Normally, the water in the p-trap blocks this, but if it dries up, this can become a problem.  So, flush all toilets.

  • Regularly inspect the property

Driving by regularly and making sure the house is still secure is important. Where possible you should arrange regular visits to the property. If you are no longer living close to the property, try to enlist the help of a friend or neighbour to check on the property as often as possible. Having regular visitors to the property makes it look occupied and acts as an effective crime deterrent. Your visitors can put lights on, collect the mail from the front door area and park their car outside.

It also will help you to become aware quickly of any damage or issues that have occurred (such as a leaking pipe) giving you the chance to resolve the issues and minimise further damage or long-term problems.

  • Keep on top of the gardening

Don’t let the yard get run down. The last thing you want when showing your house to prospective buyers is dead grass, dying plants or fallen tree limbs in the front yard. When left unoccupied gardens can soon start looking overgrown and uncared for. And that’s a clear signal that there’s no one home to look after it. Make sure you keep the grass mown, hedges trimmed and weeds at bay. If you are doing the gardening yourself, make sure all tools are locked up at the end of the day, too.

Whatever the type and wherever the property, our specialist Oriental Property Management (OPM) team can help to manage it. We offer property management expertise across all areas of real estate, at every stage of the development life cycle. Specialising in managing and maintaining an array of buildings, we serve a range of clients which include Developers, Joint Management Bodies, Management Corporations and Resident Associations. With over (xx) properties being managed in our portfolio, our team possesses invaluable knowledge on property management skills to ensure maximum client satisfaction and service excellence for all parties involved.