Mr Landlord, Mr Fix-it
I'd been having problems at home with a sticking door. After considerable thought I finally dealt with it. Then this book arrived for review. I opened it somewhere in the middle and immediately found hints on how to fix door problems, most of them simpler and probably more effective than my method. Within a very few pages either side I found hints on carpet care, stain removal and dealing with dents and holes in walls - not that I needed them at the time.
This is Roger Clist's second book. His first, called "Working Landland, Happy Tenants", dealt with the business aspects of rental properties and was aimed squarely at landlords; this one has a much wider appeal. Tenants also need to know about what their landlord can and should be expected to do in terms of maintenance - no excuses any more! And of course every homeowner is his or her own landlord.
The general thrust of the author's advice is that you need to keep your rental properties in a good state of repair, weather-proof, safe, secure, hazard-free, looking good and holding their value - rather than absolutely immaculate. That state of perfection is almost unattainable and almost certainly unmaintainable. Topics covered include: maintenance for rentability; roofs, walls, doors, windows; interior maintenance and decoration; floor coverings, drapes and curtains; plumbing and drainage systems; electrical services and stoves; grounds and gardens; fences and driveways; tools and materials. And there's more.
Roger Clist's style is cheerfully and easily readable and the book is sprinkled with examples from his own experience. And though it's primarily a book for landlords, he has a realistic and sympathetic understanding of tenants.
If you have anything to do with houses (such as living in one!) buy and read this book. And if you're a landlord, or thinking of becoming one, buy and read both his books.
Reviewed by Arthur Toms
Greymouth Star, 31 August 2006
Published by permission of the Editor