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Less Tricks, More Treats: Tips for Staying Safe this Halloween

Dr. Phillips Resident Holding a Stack of a Decorated Pumpkin and a Jack-o-LanternTo most Americans, the holiday of Halloween means candy. For many of them, especially the kids, the most popular Halloween activity would be trick-or-treating. And this is true for virtually the whole country, including in Dr. Phillips. Your tenants may want to dress up in costume with their kids and go door to door, trick-or-treating, or they may prefer to receive costumed guests for candies instead. Whichever way they decide to participate in the festivities, they still have to consider a few things to make sure the evening is a safe and enjoyable one for all. Now, as a property owner, regular tenant communication is a must. So, with Halloween coming close, this presents a great opportunity. You can use this holiday to open the lines of communication by providing some safety tips when trick-or-treating.

The first thing we’ll look at are some simple safety rules your tenants should follow if they decide to go out trick-or-treating. A tip you can give your tenants is for them to place reflective tape on costumes or carry flashlights to help improve visibility while walking down dark streets. It will also help to give them some advice about costumes. Avoid masks that obstruct your vision and skip the oversized shoes, robes, or skirts that could cause someone to trip and fall. Tell your tenants to secure all doors, douse any candles, and turn off all electronic decorations when leaving the house. This is because of the huge risk that candles and electric decorations pose— if left unattended. They are one of the leading causes of residential fires on Halloween.

The second thing we’ll take up is about receiving the guests. Properly preparing for visitors is also a big part of celebrating Halloween. Being the property owner, you can help by doing regular landscaping maintenance or ensuring that your tenants have done so. Something you can do before the holiday comes is to clear away overgrowth, low-hanging branches, and other potential hazards.

Suggest to your tenants that they can help make the celebration more pleasant for the children by clearing leaves and debris from sidewalks, driveways, and walkways, as well as removing any tripping hazards like garden hoses. It’s also a good plan to check the property’s exterior lights. If there are any burned-out bulbs, they should be replaced. As you do your check, also notice if there are dark areas around the property. These should be illuminated with extra light sources, such as landscaping lights or even battery-powered tea lights in decorative bags. A clear and well-lit walkway is a safe walkway.

If your tenant plans to get with the spirit of the holiday by placing jack o’ lanterns around the house, you have to make sure they do it safely. Here are a couple of tips you could give to them. First, make sure doorways and walkways are free of candles and other hazards. Alternatively, there are some lighting sources that do not require an open flame. Those would be better. However, if your tenant really wants to use candles in their decorating, then suggest a safe location. Make sure that it’s placed at a safe distance from where visitors might be walking or standing. It is also vital that all exterior decorations your tenant hangs up are properly secured. Should a decorative item fall and injure a visitor, or perhaps an improperly placed candle burn someone or start a fire, this could result in a lawsuit against you as the property owner.

There are some additional precautions your tenant can take to prevent accidents and injuries on Halloween. If your tenant has pets and plans to give out candy on Halloween, they should be sure to keep their furry friends indoors and secured in a safe location. It’s the best thing to do for your pet. This sees to it that nobody gets hurt just because strangers keep walking up to the property and stress out the dog. Together with that, wouldn’t you absolutely hate it if you get sued because your tenant’s dog injured someone?

Your tenants should also know what items are considered safe and appropriate for trick-or-treaters of all ages. The popular option is store-bought, individually wrapped items. These are the best, provided that they are big enough to not pose as a choking hazard. In some areas, an alternative is to leave a bowl of treats outside. This is a good option if your tenant is not planning to hand out candies themselves. Doing this also helps your rental property from becoming the target of Halloween pranks and vandalism.

While educating your tenants is a critical responsibility that rental property owners must take on, it also takes time. Since your real estate investing business has so many responsibilities that call for your attention, it might make sense to hire a Dr. Phillips property manager. Real Property Management South Orlando is an expert in the industry, providing services that allow you to spend your time on more valuable aspects of rental property ownership. If you want to know more about what we have to offer property owners like yourself, don’t hesitate to contact us online or call us at 407-982-2000.

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.