Bad Things That Just Happen to a Vacant Property

We all know there are risks to having a vacant property, and there are a whole host of “bad actors”, from scammers to vandals, that pose a threat to your property’s well-being. Other times, bad things just happen to your property seemingly on their own. Regardless of the cause of the damages, the headaches that follow from putting out these fires are all the same. Here we will talk about the bad things that just happen to a vacant property. Some of these may have never occurred to you. We address the bad things people do to your vacant property and what can be done to reduce the risk of having a vacant property in separate blogs.

Property Risk - Things That Just Happen to a Vacant Property

As funny as it might sound, some things that go on at a vacant property do so without any human intervention whatsoever. They just seem to happen. They often happen due to a lack of human intervention. Here are some of the bad things that just seem to happen at vacant properties.

Leaks  Leaks can be from faulty plumbing, running water, open value, leaky roof, or any other unchecked source of water or gas. This risk increases dramatically when a property is vacant. When nobody is home for days, weeks or even longer water can do thousands and even hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of damage. This can come from damage to walls, windowsills, flooring, and even the structure itself. This damage can be directly from water or the mold that can often grow when moisture goes unchecked.

Gas leaks can be even worse; they can be particularly dangerous in a vacant home. With nobody home to smell the leak, it is possible for gas to accumulate at levels to cause a very large explosion. Unchecked gas leaks have been the cause of many large explosions resulting in property damage and even risking lives.

For both water and gas leaks, you will want to periodically walk the property to visually inspect and well as pay attention to any unusual smells.

Clogs – The plumbing in vacant properties starts to clog over time. This clogging comes from the lack of use. When we sell or lease a property that has been vacant for a while, we usually end up unclogging and replacing multiple faucets and fixtures.

Deterioration  Vacant properties deteriorate from lack of use. Everything from air conditioning, dishwashers, window blinds, garbage disposals, you name it, breaks down from nonuse. A home is like an old car, if you don’t start it up from time to time it quits working. When we sell or lease out a home that has sat vacant for a while, commonly, the dishwasher or A/C breaks the first time the new owner or tenant uses it. The old saying, use it or lose it holds here.

Pests  If people don’t move in then the pests will. This includes everything from insects to rats to raccoons. You never know what it will be but vacant properties are a great place for critters to call home.

Weather Damage – Mother Nature can take its toll on a property, especially a vacant one. Of course, this includes storms with rain and wind damaging a property. It only gets worse when nobody is around to tie things down.

Let’s not forget that the heat and the cold are way more intense in a sealed-up vacant property than in an occupied home that is heated, cooled, and aired out daily. Excessive heat in a sealed-up home can break down many materials like rubber gaskets, flooring, window treatments who knows what else. Pipes can freeze in the cold causing an entirely different problem potentially causing extensive damage.

Bottom Line 

There is a risk of having a vacant property. Not all risks are the result of bad actors, sometimes bad things just happen because a property is sitting unused. These things include leaks, clogs, deterioration, pests, and weather damage. There are many ways to reduce these risks which we will cover in our next blog. Of course, you may want to consider hiring a property management company to help.

If you are looking for a reliable property management company or real estate broker in Long Beach, Los Angeles, or Orange County, California or you are just considering it and have a few questions contact the Mike Dunfee Group today! We are a full-service real estate company that can help you with all of your real estate needs.

Dunfee Real Estate Services
DRE # 02026232

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