A Landlord Guide to Maintenance During Social Distancing

Posted by Hannah Lapin on Apr 21, 2020 9:00:00 AM

virtual maintenance

Whether or not there is a shutdown, things break, and tenants need maintenance and repairs. Planning how to handle these repairs over a quarantine is uncharted territory for most property managers. And while landlord laws and responsibilities vary by state, there are action items everybody can take to keep their tenants and staff safe. Here are some things to consider and resources to help landlords put together a maintenance plan.

Manage Maintenance Requests Virtually

An electronic platform can really help you organize and respond to various requests. And the best part is many of these platforms are free! We like Cozy and TenantCloud.


Determine which Maintenance Requests are Essential

According to an AppFolio survey, 41% of property managers are reducing maintenance to emergency work orders only. Sort through your various maintenance requests to determine what is a priority. Generally, these repairs are considered urgent:

  • Burst water pipe
  • Roof leak
  • Blocked or broken toilet when there is only one
  • Flood damage
  • Broken essential appliances
  • No A/C No heat
  • No electricity
  • No water/hot water
  • Fire
  • Gas leak
  • Doors or windows do not close properly for safety

And generally, these repairs are considered routine:

  • Light bulb replacement
  • Air filter changes
  • Lawn work
  • Cabinet doors off their hinges
  • Running toilet

Use your best judgement on your requests.


Take Safety Precautions for Essential Work Orders

In the case that maintenance workers need to enter a tenant unit, here are some measures you can take to ensure everyone’s safety:

  • Provide protective equipment for your workers such as gloves and a face covering
  • Encourage your maintenance staff and tenants to stay at least 6 feet apart from one another
  • Promote hand washing for tenants and staff

For additional tenant maintenance resources during COVID-19, see Rentec Direct’s guide “Property Maintenance During COVID-19.”

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Related: Rent Forbearance Programs- Develop a Plan, Prepare Your Vacation Rentals for the Coronavirus

Topics: Landlording