The holiday season is a stressful time for many and one during which everyone has a lot on their minds. For property managers, there can be increased concerns during this period when business and work load could be at their highest and other issues come into play. Because a number of people go away on vacation or to visit relatives during this time, it means that there are a lot of empty units which then become targets for vandalism and theft.
“Open communication ahead of time prevents misunderstandings and disgruntled tenants.” This is absolutely true, considering how important communication is in all other situations when you work as a property manager. To keep your renters happy, you need to make sure to get an understanding of when they will and will not be around, whether its in a commercial or residential space. This way, you can make sure to check out the area every once in a while to discourage break-ins or, similarly, you could hire security for this holiday period when the risks are higher; the cost will be worth it if it can prevent an expensive invasion.
Safety isn’t the only consideration; if your residents are having others over for a holiday party, make sure that there are no mysteries about the rules and allowances about such things as parking, noise violations, and other potentially uncomfortable regulations. If your tenants (and you) are trying to enjoy your time off, the last thing you want to do is to make things uncomfortable by crashing the party to deliver unfortunate news. It’s necessary to enforce your own rules and code, of course, but these matters could be settled ahead of time if you, again, remember that “open communication ahead of time prevents misunderstandings and disgruntled tenants.”
Cooking is a huge activity during holiday get-togethers, whether it’s the turkey for Thanksgiving or cookies for an office party. Unfortunately, this can also mean that there is a higher risk of fire hazards if food is put into the oven or left on the stove without someone to keep an eye on it. If there is a party, remind residents to be aware of food preparation and that the host or a responsible guest should really be watching anything that’s being cooked during the event, particularly if it’s very busy and rowdy.
Another fire hazard is a potential abundance of candles and unattended decorative lights. String and other holiday lights should never be left unobserved, particularly for long periods of time; this means they shouldn’t be left turned on throughout both the day and night with no time to cool down. Remind your residents to turn off the lights and other devices when they aren’t in the unit. You and your renters should be just as wary as outdoor lights and should check to see that they are both meant to be outside (aka, weather resistant) and that they aren’t placed on top of anything flammable. As for Christmas trees, make sure that somebody is keeping them well-watered; a dry pine can just be a huge source of kindling if a fire begins, furthering the danger.
Holiday time usually means fireplace time, if there are any on your property. This is another possible danger, like the others, for damage to life and limb if left burning without attentiveness. “If your property’s units have working fireplaces, have maintenance check each fireplace to ensure that it’s in prime working condition without any obstruction in the flue.” Another good idea would be to poll residents and to see if they need any information or help getting to know the workings of your fireplaces; if so, you could see about having maintenance workers speak with the people who indicate a desire for instruction to prevent accidents.
While theft and fire are the two biggest issues that arise during the holiday season, there are a number of other concerns to keep in mind now and throughout the rest of the year. Working as a property manager comes with a lot of responsibility, but it also means putting the safety of those under contract at the top of your list whether they’ve been naughty or nice. Treat yourself for all your hard work this month by taking one of Anton Systems’ SKYLINE training seminars. When you sign up for one of the sessions, you’ll have an experience that shapes and builds your knowledge of what property software should be. The better your understanding of this powerful tool, the easier you’ll find it to get things done during every month of the year. Increasing your SKYLINE knowledge allows for expedited and more well-rounded work as a landlord no matter the type of your property. Whether you’re interested in virtual courses or on-site training, Anton Systems provides a number of options to fit your needs and to make every step of your business that much easier.