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Is Your Rental Property a Potential Hazard to Your Tenants?

Spokane Tenant Looking at Mold in His Rental Home

It’s crucial for your tenants to feel secure and at home in their rental property as a Spokane property manager. Reducing vacancies and improving the property’s cash flow can be achieved by ensuring a tenant’s safety. However, if you do not take special precautions, potentially hazardous conditions can develop without your knowledge. Let’s look at five of the most prevalent home dangers that, if not addressed, could seriously harm or even kill your tenants. It’s crucial to be aware of the typical household hazards and how to avoid them if you want to make sure that your rental property is safe for your tenants.

Toxic Mold

Molds develop in moist areas that contain a food source, such as cardboard or paper. A musty odor is frequently produced by mold, and for most people, this is the first indication. Molds come in a variety of forms, the majority of which are unsightly but not especially harmful to people. Black mold, or Stachybotrys, on the other hand, can be poisonous. In severe cases, it may result in anaphylactic shock, allergic reactions, and respiratory distress.

The good news is that it’s relatively simple to stop mold from growing in a rental property. Mold can be kept at bay by using an exhaust fan in steamy bathrooms, ventilating the home, and installing a dehumidifier in the basement. Don’t forget to inform and warn your tenants about the dangers of mold. Additionally, you need to routinely check your home for mold growth. If the worst should happen and you discover black mold, it’s critical to call in a professional right away who can remove it safely and address the source of the moisture that initially caused the mold.

Asbestos

There is no doubt that asbestos is a significant problem, particularly in older rental properties. However, asbestos that is contained within walls or other closed spaces is generally safe as long as it isn’t disturbed. If the walls of your rental property have asbestos, you must ensure that your tenant is aware that they must not drill holes or make any other alterations to the walls, not even to drive a nail. Even tiny gaps could allow asbestos to enter the house and lead to cancer such as mesothelioma.

Only qualified professionals should remove asbestos. You shouldn’t attempt to remove it yourself or let a tenant do it in order to prevent accidents and diseases associated with asbestos.

Lead Poisoning

Lead is an additional highly unsafe substance that may be present in older rental homes. Prior to its prohibition in 1978, lead paint was commonly used in older homes. Even if you’ve painted over the old paint, lead-based paint can flake off as the home ages, exposing your tenants, their children, and their pets to the toxin. In certain areas, lead poisoning can also come from old pipes.

You should have your rental property’s plumbing and water thoroughly inspected for lead to prevent lead poisoning. It’s also a good idea to have your paint tested and removed by experts trained to do so safely if your property was constructed prior to 1978. While covering lead paint with new paint is a temporary workaround, the only way to ensure that your tenants are lead-safe is to completely remove the old paint from all impacted surfaces.

Fire

In the USA, house fires are a far too frequent occurrence. Unfortunately, residential fires can be fatal. 2,620 civilians per year die in home fires, which account for over 346,000 annual incidents. Oil and other ingredients cause cooking fires, whereas dryer lint is the leading cause of laundry room fires. Faulty appliances, electrical problems, and lit candles left unattended are other significant causes of home fires.

There are several things you should do to keep fires from starting in your rental property. First, the dryer vent should be cleaned once a year, and you should do everything in your power to ensure that your rental property is electrically sound. Second, give them fire extinguishers, functional smoke detectors, and other necessities, and instruct them on fire safety, as well. These easy steps will help you significantly lower the likelihood that your rental property will catch fire.

Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide is yet another usual household hazard. Burning fuels like charcoal, propane, wood, and other substances release carbon monoxide, an odorless and colorless gas. Carbon monoxide can build up in a confined environment and cause carbon monoxide poisoning when these fuels-using appliances and engines are not properly ventilated. Headaches, nausea, blurred vision, and confusion are all potential symptoms of mild carbon monoxide poisoning. Extreme carbon monoxide poisoning can lead to irreversible tissue damage or even death.

Through proper maintenance and tenant education, it is possible to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s crucial to have your fireplaces and other appliances that utilize any of the aforementioned fuels regularly serviced. Add carbon monoxide detectors to your rental home so that both you and your tenants will be informed of any potential risks. Help your tenants understand that they should never leave a car running or use a propane device in an enclosed space if your rental property has a garage or if they have a propane grill or heater on the premises. Simple safety instructions could prevent your tenants from becoming ill or even worse.

It takes a lot of work and time to ensure your tenants’ health and safety. Why not seek advice from professionals? At Real Property Management Spokane County, our comprehensive property management and tenant relations programs are designed to keep both your property and your tenants safe. To learn more about the services we offer, call us at 509-462-1042 or contact us online today!

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.