Does your finished basement need foundation repair? Have you noticed persistent leaks, dampness or cracks in the basement? A wet basement can be your worst nightmare. Make basement maintenance a priority for your property by addressing the most common issues early on.

As a property manager, managing the waterproofing, plumbing, electrical and insulation work can take some extra maintenance planning on your part. Foundation cracking can occur during anytime of the year, but often occurs during the cold and rainy months when strong heavy rains and floods occur. If you are considering finishing your basement or are currently managing a finished basement, consider the following solutions to ensure your basement remains safe and functional.

1. Defective Gutters: Make sure the property's drainage systems including gutters and spouts are working effectively and diverting water away from the property. Gutters must be sized large enough for the amount of rainfall your property gets. Compromised drainage systems are often easy to identify; if your property needs a drainage system cleaning, it can significantly improve your property's safety.

2. Ineffective Grading: The mulch beds and soil around the foundation of your property should slope away from the exterior walls and redirect water flow. Similarly, ensure that other material surrounding the property such as driveways and sidewalks are installed at a slope that is going against the basement.

3. Interior Water Leaks: Basement windows should be installed above ground level with waterproof seals. Inadequate seals can easily put your property at risk of being damaged by water. Prevent damage by waterproofing windows and features across the interior walls to ensure leaking doesn't occur.

4. Condensation: When warm, moist air interacts with the cool basement walls and floors, condensation can occur. To combat this issue, ensure the exhaust of your dryer and drain central air conditioner. Next, make sure problem areas such as walls, pipes and ducts are covered with insulation. For further protection, install an exhaust fan, or an air conditioner to promote increased air circulation.

Maintaining regular maintenance across these four areas are vital to protecting your property from a compromised basement. Cleanup costs for basement related issues tend to be higher than preventative expenses due to extended damage to furniture, utility equipment and interior room walls. Schedule regular preventative maintenance to make cost-effective improvements to your property every season.