Many renters associate their landlords or property managers with bills and emergency maintenance. And of course, you hold responsibility for those two items.
However, you can form a stronger bond with your tenants by sharing holiday safety and security tips. Such advice safeguards against hazards like fire, winter weather, and theft. It also offers other benefits, such as communicating that you care about your renters as people rather than dollar signs.
In doing so, renters choose to continue leasing from you, which reduces tenant turnover. They could even act as brand advocates and attract new tenants to your properties. To achieve those aims, discuss the following seven-holiday hazards with your tenants, along with advice on how to circumvent them.
1. Tie Up Packages with Security Cameras
During the holidays, people shop online and have gifts sent to their homes. And many people leave those packages sitting on the porch for some time. Allstate reports nearly three in ten renters are guilty of the habit.
Tip: Advise renters to set a time for package deliveries or ask someone they trust to pick up the items. If possible, you could let renters send their shipped items to your front office for safekeeping. You could also discuss DIY security options, such as smart home security cameras, with your tenants so they can more easily keep an eye on deliveries.
2. Make the Holiday Season Bright Automatically
When tenants leave on holiday, they may forget to leave a light on to prevent break-ins. In any case, an always-on light may not be the best security solution. Burglars scope out homes and look for ones with predictable habits, including a light left permanently on.
Tip: Smart home security cameras help with monitoring, but renters can take extra precautions with home lighting. Smart lightbulbs, combined with timers and sensors, create the illusion of habitation. Offer renters information about the lights and their benefits, which include not only heightened security but also energy savings.
3. Deck the Halls Carefully
Renters want to decorate for the holidays. However, they may not decorate safely or in accordance with their lease agreements. They could overload circuits, stand on tottery chairs, or bring home a real Christmas tree, and those could all cause them injury or damage your property.
Tip: Hold a community gathering and go over acceptable holiday decorations at your complex. Also talk about smart plugs, extension cords, and ladders. Since not, all your tenants will come to the meeting, send physical and digital copies of the information to residents.
4. Roast Chestnuts on a Controlled Fire
Not many apartments feature fireplaces, but each unit houses heating and cooling equipment. Both items pose potential fire hazards, as do tenants’ holiday preparations. They may get carried away with cooking, leave candles burning, or forget to water their Christmas tree (if you allow them on the property).
Tip: Perform regular maintenance on furnaces or other heating equipment. Inspect your properties, examining fireplaces, fire extinguishers, and smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Also go over some basic, common rules about burning candles, cooking holiday meals, and using the fireplace (if applicable).
5. Let Pets Join the Chorus
If you allow pets at your properties, you know the damage they can cause. Pet owners sometimes forget the danger, though, particularly during holiday meetings and greetings. Pets can pull down trees, tip over candles, or get into trouble, resulting in general chaos and panic.
Tip: Provide pet owners with holiday safety tips geared toward furry, scaly, or feathery creatures. For example, holiday plants like holly and mistletoe are poisonous to animals. Tinsel can be hazardous, too, especially if your renter has a playful feline.
6. Let Your Christmas Be White and Problem-Free
Falling snow is beautiful. But it and below-freezing temperatures could cause safety issues. Heavy snowfall could damage roofs and gutters, and a frozen pipe—well, you know what happens when one bursts. Ice can also be dangerous, leading to falls and injuries.
Tip: Protect your property against water damage by cleaning out the gutters every spring and fall. Also inspect the roof, looking for weak spots. For frozen pipes, share the usual tips with renters: let a faucet drip while they’re away, cover exterior water spouts, and set the thermostat at a safe temperature. As a further precaution, you may want to install smart leak detectors on pipes.
7. Send Renters Home for Christmas Securely
Many of your renters may travel to visit friends and family over the holiday season. You have no problem with those plans. But you may worry about your properties’ security and want tenants to return to their abodes as they left them.
Tip: To prevent theft and other security incidents, invest in smart home security gadgets. Door and window motion sensors, for example, send you an early alert when something seems amiss at a property. Additionally, you may want to give tenants information about renters insurance. The coverage protects everything inside their homes. It also safeguards them against liability concerns, such as a friend who falls and breaks a bone while inside their home.
The holidays are filled with hazards. Minimize the issues your tenants could face with the tips shared here. They’ll get you and your tenants back to enjoying all the season has to bring, including a healthy landlord-tenant relationship.
Author Bio: Scott Bay is a digital journalist who reports on the latest technology trends, focusing specifically on smart home technology, travel, and AI.
If you liked this article, subscribe to Rentometer's email newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest trends in rental housing.