According to the Country Fire Authority (CFA), preventable home fires cause damage worth $42 million annually. As an investment property owner, you wouldn’t wish to be part of those statistics. Conducting routine checks and fixing potential threats go a long way in ensuring the safety of both your tenants and your property. Below are some vital steps to mitigate these unfortunate occurrences.
1. Test your sprinkler systems and smoke alarms
Sprinklers and smoke alarms are useless if they are not functioning properly. Therefore, ensure you check all your fire alarms and systems regularly. Smoke alarms, for example, beep to signal they require new batteries, so you need to replace these as soon as you can. You should also make sure any sprinklers are functioning as these can greatly reduce the damage if a fire breaks out. Finally, consider purchasing some fire extinguishers and provide your tenants with information on how to use them safely.
2. Inspect all heating sources regularly
A CFA fire analysis report revealed that heating sources cause the highest number of home fires. They listed cooking, electronic, and heating apparatus as the prime catalysts. When conducting your regular inspections, ensure you complete any property repair requests from your occupants as soon as possible.
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3. Obtain insurance cover for your property
Taking out an insurance policy is the best decision you can ever make as a property owner. Most companies that offer insurance to homeowners usually sell landlord insurance policies too. As the landlord, you are still the homeowner – your tenants are just the occupants. We advise securing landlord insurance that covers you for a range of liabilities. You also need to clarify with tenants which damages you will be responsible for, and the ones they will have to pay for.
The three elements needed to make fire – oxygen, heat, and fuel – are the very same ones you need to be watchful of. Fires start and spread so fast that even the slightest case creates severe damage; you wouldn’t want to watch your investment go down the drain knowing you could have potentially prevented it in the first place.