6 Tips on Keeping Tenants Happy in Winter

Need help keeping tenants happy and reducing tenant turnover? Here are some cost-efficient tips that are sure to keep everyone happy, including yourself.

1. Install Insulation

Whether your Wellington property is old or new, insulation is the most effective measure to save money on power bills and keep tenants comfortable this winter. Done properly, insulation can become a win-win for property owners and tenants. Not only do fully insulated properties use 30% less energy to heat, warmer and healthier homes also reduce future maintenance costs caused from ongoing mould and damp issues, making life easier for everyone. Installing insulation has never been easier or more cost-efficient. Currently the New Zealand government is providing the Warm up New Zealand: Heat Smart programme, which allows eligible pre-2000 rentals to receive 60-90% subsides off total insulation costs. It goes without saying that insulation is a huge draw card that attracts good tenants and encourages happy tenants to stay longer, making this a worthy investment for every property’s future in Wellington.

2. Dampness and Dehumidifiers

We all know Wellington weather is not the best during winter, and with damp weather comes mould - a problem for both tenants and property owners. A good defence against mould is investing in a dehumidifier. Try finding a plug-in desiccant dehumidifier as they are more effective in low temperatures, and will also help warm up the room – a double bonus. Reducing mould creates healthier and more comfortable living conditions, as well as reduces the occurrence of maintenance caused by mould, making everyone happy, especially the tenants.

3. Heat Pumps

Heat Pumps are a one-off cost to the property owner that create a warmer and more comfortable environment for tenants. It is well-known that heat pumps are effective in reducing heating bills and heating large areas, but it also reduces the fire risk other heaters have, making it a solid investment for the property’s future and in attracting good tenants. When chosen well, a good heat pump can heat rooms effectively, and if the property is already insulated then usually only a small heat pump is needed to keep tenants warm and happy. Most heat pumps also have a dehumidifier option, so it is worth letting tenants know this to help reduce mould and create healthier living conditions.

4. Hot Water Cylinder Wraps

Simple and cost-effective, this small task is an efficient way to reduce power bills for tenants. Before 2002, most hot water cylinders were not insulated correctly, and now need to be wrapped in specially designed insulation, making this an important factor in keeping bills down and tenants happy.

5. Water Flow Restrictors

Hot water usage is a key expense in everyone’s power bill. Not only does excessive hot water usage account for one-third of a power bill, it also encourages condensation, causing mould within the property. Reduce the water flow by replacing shower heads with a low flow model and repair dripping taps to dramatically reduce power bills, and decrease the occurrence of water damage in the property, making both property owners and tenants happy in the long-term.

6. Investing in Draught Stoppers

Often overlooked, draught stoppers are essential in the defence against the famous Wellington southerlies. First of all, tighten or repair door hinges and latches, then add weather stripping to seal gaps around windows and doors. Lastly fit draught excluders to fill the gaps under doors - brush strip types for internal doors and spring loaded automatic seals for external doors. This is a low cost alteration that will do wonders for the living conditions of your Wellington rental property and will make a huge difference to how long tenants will want to stay.

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