“Repairs and maintenance” is often used as an umbrella term for anything that needs doing to a property, but there are actually 4 quite different categories involved, all of which should be regularly considered.
Repair – These are a reactive response to something going wrong. Examples include a blocked pipe, a broken oven or a leaking roof. Repairs are the bare minimum required to maintain the property in an adequate condition.
Seasonal maintenance – Ideally, these are items that should be regularly addressed to ensure the number of repairs to the property are kept to a minimum. Examples include gutter clearing, garden pruning, painting to prevent cracking and deterioration, checking the roof tiles, and regular pest control.
Investment maintenance – This is the planned replacement of any item in the property that depreciates in value, including carpets, blinds, ovens, hot water systems, and insect screens. These enable a good level of control over the standard of the property and the cost of maintenance.
Capital works – This is any new element that is introduced into the property. Examples include adding a dishwater, a sprinkler system, or installing an air-conditioning system. This type of expense is likely to actually increase the value of the property as well as the rental return.
With consideration of all four categories, the value of the property is likely to increase.