The first day of winter is not until the 21st of December, a full thirty-four days away, but winter weather will arrive long before that point. Next week our tenants will receive the Winter Preparation Alert issued yearly by Empire before the onset of serious winter weather.

This short email provides our tenants with a list of recommendations and instructions to minimize and prevent damage to the unit during snap freezes and cold weather.

Here is a breakdown of what the tenants are sent:

  • Water – Anytime the temperature is predicted to drop below 30 degrees, leave a straw-sized stream of water flowing from both the hot and cold sides of all faucets, including showers and tubs.
    • Also, open cabinet doors under the sink in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Sprinkler System – Turn off the sprinkler system timer and shut off the valves.
    • Timers are usually found in the garage and the valves are normally in a box next to the timer. If you require assistance, let us know!
  • Hoses – Disconnect all exterior hoses and install valve covers. Skipping this step leads to more frozen pipes than any other reason.
    • Empire will provide valve covers if needed.
  • Landscaping – Leaves in the yard will kill the grass. The best cleanup method is a combo of a blower, rake, and mower with a bag attachment. But without access to those, an old-fashioned rake and leaf bag works very well.
  • Gutters and Roof – Do not go on the roof, we’ll start by specifying that. Empire does not want any of our tenants on the roof. However, look up and check if the gutters are clogged or if there are large quantities of leaves piled up. If there is, reach out and let us know.
    • Empire begins to address this piece of yearly maintenance in the first week of December.
  • Air Filters – Filters should be changed, at minimum, once every three months. A dirty air filter causes the heating unit to work harder, resulting in high electric bills.
  • Heating Systems – Wood and pellet stoves, and forced air systems all require maintenance from time to time. Is yours not running smoothly? Don’t wait for the thermostat to drop below ZERO degrees, let us know now.

In addition to cold weather and winter, Thanksgiving is next week. Our staff will be spending Thursday at home with their families as the world slows down and remembers the many blessings each of us has been given. We all have something, and someone, to be thankful for.

I hope you all enjoy your Thanksgiving. Happy landlording!