If you’re spending a great deal of money keeping your Southborough rental home’s HVAC system in good working condition, yet are still not achieving the outcome you want out of the furnace or air conditioner, you may be wondering whether or not you could be needing a new HVAC unit. What you might actually need is better insulation in your rental property.
Homes that are poorly insulated can fast become maintenance nightmares, particularly in climates with extreme temperatures. Higher utility bills and constant repair calls can quickly turn away quality tenants. Not a lot of renters want to risk staying in a house that is drafty and unable to maintain a comfortable temperature or one that would need constant HVAC work. By improving the insulation in your rental property, you can create an efficient, comfortable rental property and lower your tenant’s energy bills at the same time.
A home that is properly insulated is better able to endure many years of weather with less maintenance and repair. As per Energy Star, the right kind (and amount) of insulation can reduce outside noise, prevent pollen, dust, and insects from entering the home, control humidity levels more easily, and even reduce roof damage from ice buildup. But having sufficient insulation also means that you are putting less strain on your HVAC system, resulting in lower maintenance and repair charges and a longer life for your HVAC unit.
Industry experts estimate that most homes in the United States have significant air leaks. Even small holes and gaps can add up to big problems. In due course, these “small” air leaks are the same as keeping a window open every day of the year. It is common knowledge that HVAC systems cannot run efficiently when windows are open, and the same is true if your rental property is leaking air around plumbing, through light fixtures, or around doors or windows.
Fortunately, it is that it’s not hard to check your rental property and determine whether or not you need better insulation. Just by going up into the attic and checking to see if your insulation is covering the floor joists or not can help. A great rule of thumb is that if you can see the floor joists between blown-in insulation, you probably don’t have enough. If your attic has insulation batting, you can read the R-value printed on it or measure the depth with a measuring tape. You can then use an insulation table to identify whether you’ve got the right amount of insulation in your rental home’s attic.
Checking exterior walls is also not a complicated process. To see what kind of insulation you’ve got, remove an outlet cover, and look into the gap around the outlet box with a flashlight. You should be able to see if there is any insulation in the wall, and even how thick it is. Be sure to repeat this process for all exterior walls, and on every floor of the home. Just because the insulation is present in one wall doesn’t mean that it is in all of them.
In case you discover that your rental property is not properly insulated, it is fairly economical to have more added to existing walls and attics. But the big payoff comes with a significantly lower strain on your HVAC system and lower energy bills. Adding some batting to your attic, floor, or filling exterior walls with blown-in or foam insulation can help the house leak less air, making it easier for your HVAC unit to maintain a consistent temperature. Lower energy bills, in turn, will help you to attract and retain quality tenants, who will greatly appreciate the utility savings over many months and even years to come.
Figuring out whether your property needs better insulation, and then knowing what kind to get if it does, can take a lot of time, though. This is why at Real Property Management Metro West-Worcester, we will help you thoroughly check each rental property for current insulation levels and then connect you with quality home services vendors who can help you create an energy-efficient and attractive rental property. For more information, contact us online or call us at 508-329-6000 today.
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