A Guide to Property Maintenance in California

property maintenance

Under the California Civil Code, landlords must provide lessees with habitable conditions. Replacing and repairing faulty equipment and regularly monitoring the property is crucial for all homeowners. Finding skilled vendors and technicians to respond to an immediate emergency at the property is also a difficult task unless there is a dedicated caretaker. To save time and avoid any liability caused by damages, we at Beach Front Property Management Inc. help landlords with all aspects of property maintenance. 

What is Property Maintenance? 

Property maintenance involves keeping a property in good condition by fixing things that break, making improvements, and preserving the property. For the success of a property management company, it is important to have a smooth maintenance process, which can be profitable if managed properly. The management company needs to maintain every property they manage regularly. Residential maintenance includes: 

  1. Check regularly and fix any problems with electricity and plumbing to ensure their smooth functionality 
  2. Taking care of the outdoors and gardens 
  3. Building repairs 
  4. Safety checks, such as testing of fire alarms and extinguishers, ensure the place is safe to live in 
  5. Rodent and pest control 
  6. Property maintenance is when a tenant moves out to prepare the property for the next occupancy 

Types of Property Management Maintenance Services 

  1. Routine Maintenance

Regular upkeep of the property is essential. It includes cleaning the area, taking care of the garden, changing the lock if it is not working properly, and much more. 

  1. Maintenance of Electrical Installations

All electrical installations at the property need to be checked regularly. It includes earthing, insulation, and polarity. This kind of maintenance should be done periodically to keep everything functioning well. 

  1. Preventive Maintenance

This maintenance is done to avoid the breakdown of any machinery and the occurrence of faults with the property. This work includes the prevention of floods, deterioration of building parts, accidental damage, and more. 

  1. Protective Maintenance

Some items at the property require more than just cleaning. For example, objects made of steel require a coating to prevent them from rusting. Pillars need a regular coating to keep them strong and well-maintained. These aspects come under protective maintenance. 

  1. Emergency Maintenance

This kind of maintenance work is always carried out immediately. For example, some parts of the ceiling can fall and potentially injure the residents. This needs immediate attention and falls under emergency maintenance. 

At Beach Front Property Management, maintenance is completed by our in-house maintenance technician employees.

Property Maintenance Responsibilities 

Property managers are quite busy, with many tasks to handle for the success of their property management company. From finding and screening potential residents to renting out properties and maintaining relationships with property owners, it often feels like there is not enough time in a day to complete everything. 

Being organized and staying on top of maintenance tasks can help ensure things are remembered and noticed. It means there is more time to focus on other important jobs. Maintenance tasks often depend on the season, so making a checklist for each season can help maintenance coordinators and the team prepare for what needs to be done. 

1. Spring: This season brings warm weather, but it also reveals property damage caused by snow, wind, and extreme cold conditions. 

  1. Check buildings, patios, and common areas for any exterior damage. 
  2. Replace air filters and inspect HVAC systems to extend their lifespan. 
  3. Inspect gutters and downspouts for any blockages. 
  4. Check the roofs of properties to ensure there are no leaks or signs of damage. 

2. Summer: During summer months, maintenance issues tend to increase. As people spend more time indoors due to warm weather, they are more likely to observe issues they may have overlooked before. 

  1. Ensure that smoke alarms are checked, and fire extinguishers are replaced 
  2. Clean out window wells and gutters 
  3. Inspect for any gaps that could allow pets in and spray around the outside of the building 
  4. Trim trees do prevent any damage during storms 
  5. Keep up with the landscaping and increase watering during the hotter months 

3. Fall: Just like spring, this season is also transitional, and several things need to be completed around the property before the onset of cold weather. 

  1. Ensure the good condition of roofs, clear gutters, and winterized sprinklers. 
  2. Arrange for snow removal services if an external contractor is chosen. 
  3. Inspect HVAC systems and furnaces and replace filters as required. 
  4. Check the insulation in properties to prevent it from bursting pipes. 

5. Winter: During winter, the chances of maintenance issues increase. Prioritizing maintenance during this period is essential, as the issues can become hazardous in extreme temperatures. Winter storms can cause significant damage to the building’s exteriors. 

  1. Insulate water pipes to prevent them from freezing. 
  2. Ensure regular maintenance and servicing of furnaces to avoid equipment failure. 
  3. Ensure there is a protocol for clearing and salting walkways during storms. 
  4. Regularly inspect vacant units to prevent burst pipes or snow accumulation. 

Maintenance is a consistent responsibility where each season brings its own set of maintenance challenges with it. Understanding and knowing what to expect can help the maintenance team prepare. A preventive maintenance strategy allows you to set up procedures for inspecting and servicing equipment to avoid costly maintenance emergencies. 

Types of Property Maintenance Employees  

1. Property Owner

The landlord or property management company responsible for the rental property engages with property maintenance at a high level. Their focus concerns crucial questions: “Will tenants feel safe and comfortable? How will these efforts impact the property’s value? And what is the cost of maintenance activities?” 

2. Property Manager

A property manager oversees property maintenance tasks and handles various responsibilities such as leasing, communicating with tenants, managing guest experiences, and handling additional logistical matters. In smaller organizations, the property owner might fulfill the role of a property manager. 

3. Maintenance Technicians

They are the ones who take care of most electrical repairs required for the unit. In California, hiring professionals who are legally certified and can take care of elevators, HVAC units, appliances, and more is important. We at Beach Front Property Management employ numerous technicians as part of our in-house services, and we provide only validated vendors who meet our strict guidelines when outside sources are needed. 

4. Maintenance Supervisor or Manager

Property managers may assign leadership responsibilities to a designated manager or supervisor within larger organizations. These individuals coordinate various maintenance tasks, including addressing tenant requests, organizing maintenance schedules, and maintaining proper documentation. 

5. Janitorial Staff

Janitors and cleaning crews fulfill a similar role to maintenance technicians, but they primarily focus on cleaning, sanitation, and waste management tasks. 

6. Contractors and Vendors

These individuals or companies step in to provide services that are not managed internally due to insufficient staff, specialized expertise, or budget limitations. Examples include a landscaping company responsible for maintaining the grounds or a property management company managing all aspects of rental property upkeep. 

Benefits of Property Maintenance Services 

  1. Saves Time

The services offered by these companies help save a lot of your time, especially if it’s a huge property with a lot of people using it for commercial or non-commercial purposes. 

  1. Cost-Effective

These service technicians have better knowledge and are equipped with all the gear to keep your unit in perfect condition. If you hire them on your own, you will have to buy all the tools, which can become pricey. 

  1. Right Knowledge

All the professionals have the right knowledge and efficiency to handle any situation. Let’s say your microwave is not working properly. You might not have the right skills to repair it, the technician does, and he will do it in the best possible way. 

Proficient in All Areas of Maintenance 

These service providers are highly efficient in all the segments of maintenance. They will handle everything on their own, be it lighting issues, broken locks, ceiling repair, roof repair, doors and windows repair, or electrical work. 

Choose the Best Property Maintenance Service Provider in California 

Property maintenance is a crucial aspect of BFPM’s operations, directly influencing resident satisfaction, which is core to effective property management. Many people rent instead of owning a home to avoid the hassle of maintenance. When renters ask for maintenance help, they expect a fast response. If it’s hard to ask for help, they don’t get a reply, or scheduling is tough, renters will be dissatisfied and may decide to leave the property. A smooth maintenance process enhances resident happiness and cultivates stronger bonds with property owners. Property owners rely on BFPM to care for their investments, expecting high attention and cost-effective maintenance solutions.  

As you can see, there are so many benefits to hiring such services for the upkeep of your property. 

For any inquiries, call us at Beach Front Property Management today! 

Trevor Henson

Trevor Henson is an experienced entrepreneur (10+ highly-successful start-ups) and property investor with a demonstrated history of building and leading teams in investment property management environments, maximizing returns for property owners, and optimizing properties through construction management and re-positioning. He…
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Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

There’s the 1% Rule that is widely accepted in the rental investment business. The rule states that maintenance will cost you about 1% of the property value per year. For example, if your unit is valued at $300,000, then the maintenance will cost you approximately $3,000 per annum. Having said that, there will be months where you’ll end up spending $500 on maintenance, months where you’ll spend $100, and months when you’ll spend $5 or less!

Property management involves the following things: 1. Rental property registrations 2. Collecting fees 3. Property showings 4. Generating financial statements 5. Conducting routine inspections 6. Marketing and advertising vacancies 7. Generating move-in and move-out reports 8. Handling tenant complaints. Property maintenance includes the following things: 1. Maintenance of heating and air conditioning systems 2. Lawn and yard maintenance 3. Upkeep of common area 4. Electrical repairs 5. Plumbing 6. Painting 7. Locksmith issues

As mentioned above, you could use the 1% rule to get a rough estimate of the maintenance costs. You can also use the Square footage formula. Here, you add up the square footage of your property and allocate $1 per square foot for yearly maintenance. For example, for a 3,500 square feet rental, you could expect to spend approximately $3,500 per year in maintenance.