Your Guide to Winter Property Maintenance
Ottawa winters can be relentless. Not only do the nightmarishly cold temperatures make it hard to leave the house, but when we do, we also need to be mindful of the obstacles created by dangerous ice patches or large chunks of snow and ice falling from the rooftops above us.
As a landlord, you need to be extra mindful of property maintenance during the winter months, not only to ensure the well being of your buildings, but also the tenants who populate them.
That’s why we’ve put together your go-to winter maintenance protocol to ensure you’re reducing winter risks.
Here are 5 tips for winter property maintenance:
- Track and identify any risks.
Ice patches on driveways, paths to entrances or on stairs? Properly salting these icy areas on a regular basis will ensure that the potential for dangerous slips and falls is significantly reduced.
Does the snow accumulation on the roof look excessive? Block off a parameter so that tenants and passersby can avoid stepping into an area where chunks of ice and snow can fall.
- Track and identify electrical hazards.
Knowing where certain electrical fuses or installations are can help you identify where to set up parameters or how to safely clear snow and ice from certain areas on or surrounding the property.
- Avoid using sharp or potentially damaging tools.
The snow and ice is, after all, on the roof – and plummeting a sharp object downward with force could lead to worse problems. Wooden or rubber mallets will get the job done without puncturing the roof and causing internal damage as well.
- Use wooden or rubber shovels.
This also applies shovels. When using a shovel to remove snow and ice from a roof, it’s best to avoid steel shovels. Wood or plastic shovels can safely remove heavy snow, and by judging the depth of the snow, you can also avoid causing damage to the roof from scraping.
- Creating a clear path for emergency services.
Finally, it’s important to know where potential pathways or access points are for emergency services, should the situation warrant a 9-1-1 call. These pathways should, of course, be regularly cleared, shoveled and salted.