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Should I Repair or Replace My Driveway?

Driveway Being Installed at a St Peters RentalOne of the best ways to enhance a St. Peters rental property’s curb appeal is by having a paved driveway. However, if your rental’s paved driveway is showing signs of deterioration, you may wonder whether it is time for a repair or to even fully replace it. Even if every situation is different, by learning about your driveway’s options you can be more confident in deciding what to do next when the time comes.

Determine Wear and Tear vs. Damage

First, you have to find out why your driveway looks a bit worse for wear. Have cracks, stains, or potholes developed on the surface? Or has natural erosion damaged your rental’s driveway surface? Something as small as a water pipe leak in the yard could weaken the soil under a driveway, then lead to breaks, holes – and a major eyesore. Depending on how damaged your driveway is, you might be able to resurface it, or, if it’s severely damaged, it may be time for the entire thing to be replaced.

Options for Replacement

One of the more budget-friendly driveway materials is asphalt. But unlike concrete, asphalt doesn’t last that long and in a few years, it will start to show signs of wear. Let’s say you catch the damage early, and it’s mostly on the surface. If that’s the case, then you may be able to add another layer to restore your existing driveway’s functionality and appearance. But if the problem worsens or damages the soil beneath the driveway, you may need to re-do the whole thing.

The best time to repair or replace an asphalt driveway is spring or early fall. Outside temperature is important since it plays a huge role in the quality of the asphalt as it’s laid down, so choose a time when extreme temperatures won’t be a problem. Also, be sure to select a professional paving company with quality guarantees. A botched asphalt job can damage your property values instead of increasing them!

Even though the up-front costs are usually higher, concrete driveways usually last longer. Even if concrete lasts longer, it will still show signs of wear and tear over time, so you’ll need to address these issues that have developed when the time is right. One of the major problems with concrete is cracking and flaking. A sign of surface integrity failure is when visible cracks start to form. Although temporary, it may be a good option to repair small cracks on the surface. You can also restore the driveway’s solid appearance by refinishing the entire surface.

However, a patch job won’t work if you have drainage issues or cracks wider than a quarter-inch. Water will keep on seeping under the concrete, freezing, thawing, and further damaging your driveway’s foundation. Wide cracks, uneven surfaces, pooling water, and similar issues are signs that it might be time to replace all or part of the driveway.

Obligation for Landlords

Lastly, in most areas, landlord-tenant laws state that it’s a property owner’s responsibility to maintain the property in a habitable condition. If the damage on your rental’s driveway is so severe that it is unsafe to walk or drive on, it is best to replace it. Holes and cracks can be filled with ice and may be a safety hazard for your tenants, while potholes can ruin their vehicles, and yours too!

Along with the rest of the property, it is crucial to carefully monitor the condition of your rental property’s driveway, listen to your tenant’s concerns, and take action properly. Not attending to unsafe conditions is not worth the legal and financial risks.

Knowing when to repair or replace a rental’s driveway can be challenging. Though the good news is that you don’t need to make important decisions like these by yourself. Instead, consider giving our St. Peters property managers a call. We can help you budget for larger repairs and renovations your property needs and even handle the project itself. To learn more, contact us online.

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