With a litigation attitude more and more on the rise in our society, tenants are more aware of their rights than ever before. Further, with lawyers now advertising and touting for ‘injury business’ we must ensure that rental properties are as safe as possible. In the next few weeks we will look at some areas of typical safety concern to help you reduce your litigation risk.
1. Safety Tips for Your Investment Property
Shower Screens- Many properties still have wired glass in shower screens. Under extremes of hot and cold, these shower screens crack and can cause serious injury and leave you legally exposed. Install toughened glass, eliminating the chance of heat cracks and reduce your legal exposure. Don’t forget to talk with your insurer about the glass claim on your policy.
2. Safety Tips for Your Investment Property
Safety Switches- Young children have a fascination with sticking things in holes and unfortunately power-points can become a danger. Have your electrician install safety switches to protect tenants and their children- and also protect your conscience should something happen!
3. Safety Tips for Your Investment Property
Wooden Floor Boards- Wooden floors are great and can really lift the appeal of your property. However they must be properly maintained. Over time, some wooden floor boards may become loose and in some cases have caused serious injury to tenants who have subsequently fallen through them. Between tenancies go around and check that they are sound, and repair them as soon as they are reported loose by your tenant.
4. Safety Tips for Your Investment Property
Keys- Not only must we ensure that locks are reasonably secure, but also ensure that keys are received back from tenants when they vacate. Photocopy the keys when a new tenant moves in and get them to sign the photocopy, acknowledging having received them. Although legislation does not insist that locks be changed between tenancies, we must do all we can to ensure that what keys were given out- we get back!
5. Safety Tips for Your Investment Property
Slipping and Tripping Hazards- This type of hazard is the most common with litigation against landlords. Be vigilant for anything that may cause a tenant or their visitors to trip. Loose carpet and lino, unstable stairs, pot holes to driveways, cracked and lifting pathways, uneven driveways- all present hazards that can be prevented. Be proactive in identifying hazards and repair or remove them.
Ray White Bunbury Property Management