As the weather warms up and the snow melts, we all see the toll that winter has taken on properties. Even a mild winter such as the one we just experienced can damage residences. It’s the time of year when Lieberman’s Property Managers start their site walks through communities, specifically looking for storm damage and spring maintenance needs. Quite often your manager will be accompanied by a representative of the landscaping/snow removal company, or perhaps members of the Board. While it may be difficult to spot all problems just by looking at the buildings, we do our best to identify items that need further attention.
As a homeowner, you may wonder what LMS Property Managers are doing around the buildings – or how you can help. Here are some of the things we look for during spring property inspections, depending on the agreement with your Association.
We can spot turf damage caused by shoveling, plowing, winter salting or chemical treatments. We note shrubs and trees that are diseased or dead, and broken limbs that may injure someone.
We look for tripping hazards and damage like lifted concrete, cracks, potholes and crumbling slabs. We may also note areas with frequent standing water, as this will cause damage to the surfaces over time.
Where possible, we note damaged balconies and decks, splintered or rotted wood, mildew, rust, loose nails or broken rails. We might recognize damaged fence posts and panels, or loose or damaged siding or trim. On brick exteriors or trim, we may be able to see significant cracks and crumbling material that needs repair. We note common-area problems such as broken, cracked or rusting fixtures or doors that don’t latch properly. We also check for odors that might indicate gas leaks, dead animals to be removed or other problems.
Gutters and roofs
While we don’t usually climb up on roofs (and you probably shouldn’t either!), from the ground we can see some signs of damage. We typically look out for broken or missing shingles. We can scan gutters and downspouts to be sure they’re not dangling, broken, or detached.
Though we’re enjoying warmer days and the first flowers are popping up, spring maintenance doesn’t happen overnight. It’s important to have realistic expectations about how quickly the professionals can take care of months of hard weather and damage.
Property inspections typically start at the end of March and cleanup work may continue for weeks. Some initial signs of damage may require LMS to call in experts for more in-depth evaluations. If you note something that needs to be repaired, please call our Resident Services Department – someone else may not have reported it yet.
As always, if you have questions about what work is covered by your association dues, or how repairs are being handled, please check your Association’s rules or attend your next Board meeting.