Nothing lasts forever, and even the best-designed apartment complexes might sometimes experience what is considered normal wear and tear. For instance, you might notice your roof leaking, mildew growing in some areas, or even leaky faucets. When this happens, you need to be ready to address the problems to maintain the quality of your apartment.
In the past, maintenance was mainly done by the landlord or property manager. However, nowadays landlords have placed these responsibilities in the hands of tenants.
So, how can tenants manage effective apartment maintenance service at an affordable cost?
This article discusses a few handy solutions and apartment maintenance tips to help you keep your apartment in good shape.
Maintenance Tips for Apartments
Maintaining an apartment can be very easy if you understand the right steps. Let’s consider below what you should do to achieve successful upkeep of your unit:
Maintaining Your Apartment Floor
If you do not take good care of your apartment floor, it is likely to get damaged. One main cause of damage is dirt. When dirt accumulates in your carpet or rugs, the fibers will wear out.
In the case of harder surfaces, such as vinyl, wood, tiles, and laminate, dirt can cause scratches. In this case, we recommend that you vacuum/mop or spot treat your floors at least once a week, and sweep daily to protect it. While mopping, ensure you use the right cleaning product for your floor type.
We also recommend having mats outside and inside the unit to limit the dirt that gets into the apartment.
Leave All the Apartment Appliances Clean
In most cases, you will find certain household supplies and appliances, such as the garbage disposal, a drip pan, dishwashers, or refrigerators in your apartment. Once the landlord hands over these appliances to you, it becomes your responsibility to take care of them. At all times, you should ensure that these appliances are clean and working effectively.
Maintaining appliances involves using them properly, cleaning them, and wiping them down regularly. This way, dirt and grime will not accumulate and reduce their durability.
If you have a washing machine and/or dishwasher, avoid overloading them. While cleaning them up, employ the right detergent or solutions at all times.
In the case of a garbage disposal, having lemon or orange peels inside it can keep it free of bad smells.
For the areas in your refrigerator or dishwasher that you can not be reached while cleaning, vacuum them thoroughly.
Take Care of the Moisture in Your Apartment
Whether it is moisture from leaks or as a result of a lack of cleaning, you need to get rid of it. Having moisture in your apartment will likely lead to mildew and potential mold growth.
We recommend installing a bathroom fan, or making sure the one in your unit is working and is used regularly. You must have the fan on before a shower, and leave it on until the steam disappears.
Dirt is reputable for attracting moisture in an apartment. You should, therefore, clean the apartment at all times. When you do so, ensure you employ non-abrasive cleaners.
Your windows can also allow moisture into the apartment, depending on how you take care of them. We highly recommend closing your windows during the rainy season. Ensure you wash window curtains regularly, too. Extend this same routine to your apartment doors as well.
Regular Apartment Cleanliness
Most landlords require that you keep your apartment clean at all times, otherwise you may expose yourself to the risk of losing your security deposit. Your intention here should be to take care of the unit as if you owned it; so, when you leave, you get your security deposit back. Learn how to get your security deposit back here.
The higher the number of people in your apartment, the messier it becomes. The mess increases even more if you have children. Therefore, we recommend employing commercial cleaning supplies while cleaning your apartment. If you can not find commercial cleaners, you can still use alternatives such as vinegar and baking soda.
Ensure you thoroughly clean critical areas, like:
As we mentioned, ensure you mop the floor at least once weekly. Your goal should always be staying in a clean environment. Learn other ways on how to make your apartment smell good here.
Additionally, you must carry out preventive maintenance by ensuring that furnace units and air conditioners experience proper airflow. This mainly entails making sure the filters are clean. Change filters at least 1-3 months to limit overworking of such units.
After dealing with the air conditioner, you can proceed to inspect the vents. The aim here is to make sure that there is no dust accumulation. Learn other ways on how to reduce dust in your apartment here.
When exiting your apartment, avoid leaving heat or the air conditioner in the off position. You can simply turn the air or heat down instead. If you maintain a steadier temperature, you are more likely to save money. Learn how to keep utility bills low in an apartment here.
Maintenance in the Apartment
Besides cleaning the apartment and upkeeping the appliances, several things need regular maintenance. Let’s focus on them below:
Clogged Pipe System
If you notice water draining slowly in the kitchen or bathroom, there is a high chance a clog exists in the piping system. To prevent pipes from clogging, avoid using commercial drain cleaners which have harsh chemicals that could damage the pipes.
Always be careful what you pour into your kitchen sink. For instance, having things such as potato peels and coffee grounds in the sink can result in clogged drains.
The easiest way to unclog your bathroom sinks and floor drains is to pour hot water to dissolve the clog. You can also pour baking soda and vinegar down the drain.
If the pipe remains clogged, you should make maintenance requests to your landlord or call a professional plumber.
There are times when you might fail to have power in your apartment. In this case, check if your neighbors are in the dark too. There is a chance that the utility company is experiencing a blackout. You can give them a call for the situation to be corrected and/or a status update. You can also check the circuit breaker. The safety switch might have been activated thanks to an overload. In this case, simply reset it.
No Hot Water
Additionally, you might find that there is no hot water in your apartment, forcing you to take a cold shower. The first thing you should do is check whether your water heater circuit breaker is set correctly. If the heater uses gas, there is a chance the pilot is off. In such situations, check the owner’s manual to troubleshoot the problems. If there is any damage to any electric component, ensure you replace it immediately. Where necessary, call a qualified electrician to help you out.
The more time you spend in an apartment, the more likely you are to have overuse. The end result would eventually be some of these fixtures breaking. When this happens, you must fix them as soon as possible.
For instance, if you have a burnt out lightbulb or the smoke alarm needs new batteries, you can make quick replacements. Any major problems, such as a non-functional garbage disposal, should be left to professionals.
The Final Verdict
If you maintain your apartment regularly, you will improve its lifespan and reduce the cost of repairs. There are certain apartment maintenance options that you can comfortably manage by yourself, including maintaining the floors, cleaning and replacing malfunctioning appliances, and taking care of moisture. Additionally, you can take preventative measures to avoid unwanted pests (learn how to get rid of tiny ants in your apartment here).
However, some apartment maintenance practices require the assistance of outside experts. This includes handling power issues and unclogging pipes.
Ensure you follow the above apartment maintenance checklist, and always seek professional help for better results.