Talking to your tenants can sometime be awkward as your relationship is mainly a business engagement, but having them in your rental home makes it quite personal. With the holiday season coming we want to provide you with some great icebreaker tool for communicating with your tenants on the topic of winterization.
The holidays brings with it so many opportunities to enjoy friends, family and good food and any loss of water or a leak put a strain on our ability to enjoy any of them - tenants and landlords alike. Many preparations can be done in advance such as insulating exposed pipes, but other important things need to be done each and every night there is a freeze. Helping your tenants become familiar with routine during the winter season will help you sleep better and allow your tenants to have a happy holiday season.
Most of the cold weather issues revolve around water becoming ice. Preventing water in your pipes from becoming ice is the main focus of winterizing. To help you and your tenants enjoy the holidays without any frozen pipes we offer the below icebreaker, which is a template letter that can be distributed to all tenants on what they should do during the winter months.
If you use a service like TenantCloud then you can load this letter in the Template Docs and send it with a custom name and address to all your tenants in winter effect areas.
Winter is coming. I would like to remind you that it is the responsibility of the renter to weatherize his/her home and keep the water running inside the building during cold weather. The following are a few suggestions I would like to make:
1. Plug Foundation Vents. These are the holes around the perimeter of the house. They should be blocked off to stop wind and cold from getting under your house and to your pipes. Snug-fitting cardboard works very well for this. This will also probably help keep your house warmer.
2. Disconnect All Outside Hoses. Anytime outside weather is freezing all hoses on the outside of the house should be disconnected. This helps prevent your outside faucets from freezing. It is also a good idea to wrap the faucet with rags or newspaper and secure with string or rubber bands when the outside temperatures drop below freezing.
3. Keep all Water Inside the Building Running. It is important to keep water moving in all of the water pipes to prevent freezing. It requires more than just a drop–keep the stream approximately the width of a pencil lead (both hot and cold) from every faucet especially when outside temperatures are freezing or below. If you are worried about wasting hot water, turn off the electric breaker to your hot water heater.
4. Leave Cupboard Doors Open Under Sinks. This allows some heat near the pipes.
5. Washing Machine Faucets. There are usually two short rubber pieces of hose from your faucets to your washing machine. Disconnect these from your machine and run them into the drain pipe in the wall. This will allow you to leave both of them running also.
6. Locate Your Water Meter. The meter is sometimes difficult to find with several inches of snow on the ground or if you are in a hurry. Be sure to note its location before you need to find it.
7. Keep heat on and at a reasonably warm temperature. If you are going to be gone be sure to leave the heat on and the water dripping. Also, let your landlord know if you are not going to be home for several days.
Your efforts to prevent freezing before your pipes freeze will save you both discomfort and expense. Thank you for your efforts to maintain your home. If you have any questions please message us on TenantCloud and we will respond shortly.