Although it is impossible for landlords to control everything that takes place on a rental property, they can implement rules, provide appropriate advice and protect themselves and their tenants by giving them what is needed to stay safe. The tips below can help prevent fires from occurring at rental properties.
Adhere to Fire Codes
It’s crucial for landlords to ensure that their properties comply with local fire codes and regulations – this will not only help ensure tenant safety; it will provide a landlord with recourse in the event that anything goes wrong. If you’re unsure of whether your rental properties meet the required fire safety codes, you can contact your local fire department to schedule an inspection.
Install and Maintain Smoke Detectors
This will normally be required by most local fire codes and regulations. However, it’s crucial that landlords physically test the smoke detectors in their rental units each time tenants move in or out. Replacing the standard batteries in these units with 10-year lithium options will also help ensure that they remain in working order. Providing additional safety by having carbon monoxide alarms installed in entryways and bedrooms is also recommended.
Place Fire Extinguishers in Kitchens
Placing a fire extinguisher in the kitchen of a rental unit can go a long way in helping to prevent a small fire from causing substantial damage. If properties have multiple levels such as apartment blocks, an extinguisher should be available on each level. In cases where properties have outdoor kitchens, providing an extinguisher in these areas will also help provide an additional level of safety, especially when tenants will be grilling outdoors.
When tenants move into a rental unit, it’s recommended that they be shown how to use the extinguishers that have been provided as well.
Establish Safety Guidelines for Grilling
Landlords should clearly explain safe grilling practices to their tenants when they move into their property. Tenants should know how to inspect propane tanks for possible leaks and ensure that grills are used a minimum of 10 feet away from the building at all times. Although it may seem like common sense, tenants should also be made to understand that under no circumstances should grilling ever be permitted indoors (it does happen, unfortunately).
Insist that Tenants Carry Renter’s Insurance
It’s not unreasonable for landlords to insist that tenants carry some form of renter’s insurance. It’s more affordable than many people realize and it can help ensure that tenants will be able to recover the loss of any personal items if a fire or other disaster occurs. Requiring tenants to have this in place will also provide landlords with peace of mind in the event of anything going wrong.
Having the above-mentioned policies and procedures in place will help ensure that a landlord’s rental properties are safe for tenants to inhabit and that they comply with the required fire safety codes and regulations. If you’re a landlord and you want to upgrade the fire safety infrastructure in your rentals, contact us today to inquire about obtaining the finance you need.