One type of home remodel that’s common despite probably not being what first comes to mind is repair work on rental properties.

After all, that’s the reason landlords and leasing agencies require a deposit. In many cases this covers any damages left in the property after a tenant leaves. But in cases where the damage is greater than simply replacing some carpet or repainting walls, it can quickly become an investment.

Any time that’s the case it’s important to get the property back in show quality again as quickly as possible to mitigate any needed investment for repairs. The faster another tenant signs a lease, the faster the property generates revenue again.

Refinishing Scuffed or Stained Floors

We’ve heard stories from property managers about garbage and other messes left all over floors when tenants moved out, such that the floors were damaged beyond what a thorough cleaning would resolve.

In those cases the only real answer was to strip the floors, re-stain, and apply new clear coat. That can be a lot of work if the majority of the apartment or house has hardwood flooring. Even more delicate a coordination if you’re also painting walls.

Same idea if there’s tiling or linoleum that has gouges. Sometimes with tile, if you can still find matching tile at hardware stores, you can replace only the damaged sections. But other times you end up in that trouble spot where there’s nothing that would match and you’re forced to swap an entire room’s flooring.

Repairs aside, we definitely recommend putting 1-2 coats of clear coat (polyurethane) on freshly re-stained wood flooring before having tenants move in. Not only because it looks great and helps with that first impression, but also because it protects the floors from moving furniture and foot traffic.

Repairing Water Damaged Areas

Water damage is serious business. In order to prevent mold and other issues it’s important to act quickly if there’s been a leak or significant spill.

Sometimes the damage is old, such as examining the space after a tenant leaves and realizing the floor around toilets or tubs is rotted. Immediate giveaways are when linoleum is peeling up or tile/wood is discolored and spongy.

When there’s floor rot going on the wood will need to be replaced, but you’ll first have to determine how far that rot goes. Sometimes it’s relatively simple and only requires swapping out a section of the floor. From there you can re-tile or lay a new strip of linoleum as needed after the floor is leveled off again.

Because water damage can involve mold and, if it’s deep enough, also affect structural wood materials you need to work with a contractor that is licensed for building and not simply minor repairs. The last thing you need is to be halfway into a job with everything torn apart and realize your team isn’t equipped for how serious the job has become.

You can read more about some of our projects involving repairs on rotted wood here.