Plumbing Advice for Landlords | Cambridge Plumber

January 8, 2019

Real estate can be a great investment and a fantastic way for investors to create a steady stream of passive income. But managing your rental properties can be a bit of a headache, especially when it comes to maintaining the yard, painting, taking care of the floors, and avoiding a plumbing emergency on a Sunday or in the middle of the night.

As a landlord and homeowner, you know how taking smart, proactive steps can save you loads of time and money and plumbing is a perfect example. For instance, by only flushing toilet paper down the toilet, you rarely have to worry about toilet clogs.

But if you have an uneducated renter, they can flush all kinds of things down the toilet at your expense! Same goes for kitchen sinks drains. If you have a renter who pours all of their cooking grease down the drain, it can wreak havoc on the home’s pipes.

What is a Landlord to Do?

So, what is a landlord to do? Here’s our advice on how to reduce plumbing costs and protect your investment:

  1. The first plan of action is to help educate renters. You can create a write-up for renters explaining how to take care of: the kitchen sink, the garbage disposal, bathroom sinks, and toilets. Also in the write-up, explain how to shut-off the water for each appliance and direct them to the home’s main shut-off valve.
  2. When renters sign a lease, give them a tour of the sinks and drains in the house. Explain the notes in your write-up and show them where all the shut-off valves are located.
  3. In the lease, you can stipulate that the renter is responsible for a specific amount; for example, the first $50 of a plumber’s service call. This way, they’ll be motivated to take proper care of the home’s plumbing.
  4. Provide renters with a home plumbing kit, which includes: a toilet plunger, a sink plunger, drain covers (to catch hair), and a Zip-It tool to clean out bathroom sink drains. And, show them how to use these items!

Usually, the reason why renters don’t take proper care of a home’s plumbing system is because they’re uneducated. If you spend an hour typing up the write-up, create a handy plumbing kit and give them a good demonstration, you could save hundreds, if not thousands in plumbing costs. As the Benjamin Franklin saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Related: What Not to Flush Down the Toilet!