Wheeeeelp, it’s that time of year again. By the time you’re reading this September blog, there’s a more-than-likely chance that we’ve either seen a bit of snow already, or that it’s coming up in the forecast. Welcome to Alberta, where summer turns to winter, and fall…well, fall just doesn’t really seem to exist!
Okay, okay, maybe it’s not that bad – most likely, we’re just a little grumpy at the fact that summer is winding down once again to make way for the changing seasons. That said, though, September really is the perfect time for your condo corporation and property management company to start thinking about what they need to do to prepare your complex and its various units for the chilly weather ahead. Not sure where to start? We’re happy to walk you through the process – read on!
Getting Your Condo Winter-Ready
Making sure your condo complex is ready for the winter should be one of the highest-ranking annual routines your building goes through, in terms of importance. It’s crucial to ensure that every at-risk building component is dealt with, and that all winter-maintenance-related plans and strategies are in place well before the temperature drops in order to avoid any costly repairs – or, even worse, any injuries or accidents. Here’s a quick rundown of everything you should account for before the snow falls:
- Take a look at your contracts. Particularly the ones that relate to ice and snow removal. Do the details and stipulations still seem acceptable to your board? What does your condo management company think about the terms and conditions? How was the snow removal service last year – did they show up right away to keep the roads and walkways clear for your building’s residents? Or did it seem like they were constantly behind the eight-ball, leaving cars and people to fend for themselves in the snow and ice? Changing contractors can be an involved and complicated process, but if you need to make a switch before winter hits, now’s the time to do it.
- Take care of those pipes. There’s nothing worse than having to deal with frozen or burst pipes in the dead of winter, so be sure to take the time now to address any potential issues ahead of the cold and snow. Also, it might be a good idea to take a moment to remind residents of their responsibilities when it comes to these sorts of maintenance concerns – a quick note reminding folks to keep their windows closed in order to avoid damaging the waterworks can go a long way!
- Get each and every condo unit onboard. This might seem like a small point, but maintaining open communication with residents regarding winter preparations can be extremely significant not only when it comes to winter preparedness, but also in terms of encouraging green habits and saving the building money over the course of the season. Having residents get into the habit of checking their doors and windows for leaks or drafts each year, as well as doing things like replacing window seals, keeping their units at a specific temperature, etc., can really contribute to the overall efficiency of the building, taking stress off major mechanical fixtures like furnaces and boilers, and consuming less energy overall, to boot.
- Ensure those futuristic monitoring networks are up and running. Many newer or retro-fitted condos now come equipped with intelligent monitoring systems that work to keep an eye on critical building-wide systems such as furnaces, piping networks, and more. If your building features vibration sensors, temperature-monitoring devices, or any other sort of integrated system, take the time to run a few tests before Old Man Winter shows up to ensure that they’re working properly and reporting accurate information.
- Give your building’s heating systems a good once-over. If we’ve learned anything, it’s that furnaces and boiler systems only ever really seem to break down either in the first week of winter, or during the most miserable cold snaps of the season. Avoid having to deal with an angry building full of frozen-solid residents, and make sure your condo building’s heating systems are in tip-top shape while the weather’s still warm.
And Just Like That, You’re Condo Building is All Set
Prepping for winter isn’t anybody’s idea of a fun time, but, trust us, the sooner you’re able to get ahead and get your condo building in shape for the snow and ice, the better off you’ll be. It might feel like you’re admitting defeat and acknowledging that summer’s truly over, but your building residents will thank you for it.
If you need a bit of additional help getting things sorted out before winter rears its frosty head, we’re happy to lend you a hand. Get in touch with Condo Management Edmonton, and we’ll do what we can to help set your condo building up for a safe and successful winter. Let it snow!