Four Fall Projects to Tackle Now for Year-Round Property Protection
By Brian Aguirre, The Home Depot
Fire emergencies, unwanted intruders or even inadequate insulation can all pose threats to your property and its tenants. Fortunately, a mix of the right products, devices and technology can help you monitor a property and minimize risks to your investment. Here are four projects you can tackle this fall to better protect your investment year-round.
1. Don’t Let Fire Catch You Off-Guard
The average cost to repair fire and smoke damage is $4,000. This expense can skew much higher if a roof, kitchen cabinetry or other fixtures need replacing.
October is National Fire Prevention Month, and a good time to ensure your fire safety equipment – including smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers – are in good condition. It’s also a timely opportunity to consider upgrading to newer, “smarter” products that can better prepare you for unforeseen risks.
Most fires start in the kitchen, with electrical malfunctions and heating as two other leading causes. Smoke alarms provide early warnings, giving tenants time to evacuate and to alert firefighters. As a property owner, you can do three things to ensure your smoke alarms are working properly:
- First, replace the batteries every 12 months.
- Second, replace all smoke alarms after 10 years. Remember: toss at 10, then start again.
- Third, regularly make sure smoke alarms are clean and free from paint, dust or grease.
Installing smoke alarms on every level of your home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas, is the first step to protect your home. Kidde is a top-rated brand for fire safety products. The Kidde smoke detector with ionization sensor is ideal for living areas, alerting you to fire hazards with ionization sensing alarms that may detect invisible fire particles even sooner than photoelectric alarms. Kidde also offers combo smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to provide double the protection in one product.
Fire extinguishers are also essential as they effectively put out 80 percent of fires. In the kitchen, be sure to install an extinguisher labeled “B” for use on flammable substances like gasoline, grease and oil. In addition to the kitchen, extinguishers should be strategically located throughout every level of the home, including the garage.
2. Secure the Outdoors
When it comes to protecting your property, “extra eyes” are a good idea. Take security to the next level with smart cameras, doorbells and even outdoor lighting systems. These products send real-time alerts to your mobile device if anything is detected – ensuring 24/7 surveillance no matter where you are.
Google Nest offers several smart cameras options, as well as smart doorbells, that can be part of a comprehensive security package. The Google Nest doorbell sends an alert when it detects motion at the door, and lets you speak with visitors through your mobile device. Ring also has a doorbell that sends an alert when someone is at the door, records footage of them and allows you to communicate via a two-way talk feature.
You can shine a light on security, too. Defiant offers energy-efficient LED motion-activated floodlights that double as HD security cameras and send alerts to a mobile device. For Pro customers, The Home Depot makes it easy to purchase exactly what you need with call-ahead ordering, online purchasing, in-store pick-up or even onsite delivery.
3. Good Fencing is a Good Investment
Adding value to a home can be as easy as installing a fence around your home. In addition to defining the property’s perimeters, providing privacy and improving home security, fences can increase your property value.
The Home Depot offers a selection of fencing options at bulk pricing when buying in large quantities and in-store associates can walk you through everything you need to know, from selecting the right type of fence to securing posts and attaching panels.
Need the right tools to install the fence? The Tool Rental Center is stocked with top brands to get the job done, including augers, post hole diggers, DeWalt hand tools and more.
4. Insulate for Comfort and Cost Savings
A well-insulated property carries numerous benefits. It can help minimize energy bills, provide a moisture barrier in damp areas, soundproof a home, and offer a safer structure in the event of a fire or carbon monoxide threat.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, five areas of a home should be properly insulated: the attic, interior and exterior walls, floors, crawl spaces and the basement. Each could require a different type of insulation, and The Home Depot carries several varieties by Owens Corning to tackle every job.
You have a lot invested in your real estate properties, and the proper safety and security measures can give you the peace of mind that your investment is well protected. Whether you’re tackling these projects or any other property protection improvements, The Home Depot Pro is the go-to destination for landlords and real estate investors.
Designed by professionals for professionals, Pro Xtra is The Home Depot’s loyalty program that helps you save money, manage your spending and grow your business. In addition to the program’s standard benefits, National REIA members also receive a two percent biannual rebate, 20 percent off paints and primers, volume pricing and more. It’s free to join so check it out and get started today.
Brian Aguirre is the Home Depot Pro National Account Manager for the National Real Estate Investors Association