As a house owner, you know that the Holiday Season is one of the busiest times of the year.
On top of the regular work-home routine, most people are also deal hunting, gift shopping, planning elaborate parties, decorating and spending long hours cooking family dinners.
Your tenants are not an exception, and our experts from Bay Property Management Group think it’s a good practice to send out a memo to your tenants reminding them about holiday safety tips. Here are a few things to include.
Christmas is not the same without a Christmas tree, and it’s only natural that your tenants would want to dress one up. Remind them that, whether real or synthetic, a Christmas tree is a fire hazard. It is important to:
- Keep a real tree well-watered, because a dry tree will catch on fire easier.
- Never place a tree next to a heat source, such as a fireplace, portable heater or a candle. Christmas trees fall over all the time because of pets, kids or poor balance. Make sure a falling tree won’t hit anything that can cause fire.
- Don’t overload the tree with lights and sockets – with plugs. Be careful with extension cords.
- Don’t leave indoor Christmas lights on while you are sleeping or away. Not only will it help cut down electricity costs, but will also help minimize the risk of fire.
Outdoor lights and decorations are also quite popular (and just as dangerous) as indoor ones. Many people decorate their porches, windows, roofs, nearby bushes and even large trees. Outdoor lights wear out quicker due to harsh weather conditions they are exposed to. If you’ve been using the same lights for more than 5 years, it might be the time to replace them.
Unfortunately, the Holiday Season is also a great time for burglars to break into homes, because people are less cautious, more forgetful and frequently absent. If your tenants plan on traveling, make sure they let you know, so that you can keep an eye on the vacant property (or hire a local property management company in Baltimore to do it for you). Other safety tips include:
- Not announcing one’s travel plans on social media.
- Not leaving a “we are away until…” recording on an answering machine.
- Locking everything up and double-checking.
In a chaos of holiday shopping, decorating and cooking, it’s almost inevitable to put a strain on household appliances, such as stoves, refrigerators and furnaces. And if they already had some issues, expect a major repair bill. For Baltimore property managers, this is a good time to conduct a thorough inspection and make sure everything is in good shape. Besides appliances, you should also check:
- Gas lines and smoke detectors
- Presence and condition of fire extinguishers
- Usability of a backup generator: power outages are particularly not welcome this time of the year.
Make sure your safety memo has a tone of an advisory rather than an order. You can even hand it in personally during the safety inspection or mail it along with a Christmas card. Either way, your tenants will appreciate your effort to make their life safer.