As a landlord, you are fully responsible for the structural integrity and safety of your apartment building. Although tenants may occupy its units, it ultimately falls on you to protect your building against risks and calamities, including natural disasters, theft, fire, and more. But how can you guard against each of these unpredictable events?
Getting the right insurance policy for your building from Muller Insurance is the best way to protect your investment. However, property owners must also familiarize themselves with common emergencies and disasters so they can take measures to prevent these events. Here, we’ll take a look at common disasters to help you prepare for the worst.
Prepping for Natural Disasters
As you likely know, natural disasters include weather phenomena like hurricanes and tornadoes. Here in New Jersey, we very recently experienced the dire effects of Hurricane Sandy. During hurricanes like this one, homes are destroyed by a combination of high wind pressure and strong suction, which can cause buildings to lose their roofs, overturn, or even collapse.
To prepare for similar storms, you should secure any outdoor furniture included for tenant use, promptly remove fallen trees or other debris from your property, and consider installing hurricane shutters and glass. You should also create an emergency plan so your tenants can stay safe in the event of a natural disaster. It’s wise to encourage tenants to secure their property as well, such as tables and chairs, grills, and the like, in the event of a storm.
Preventing Fire Damage
Apartment fires can become tragic in minutes, engulfing furniture, harming tenants’ lungs, and damaging a building’s essential structural components. To help stop a fire in its tracks, be sure to adhere to the following guidelines:
- Install and maintain the required number of smoke alarms
- Replace each smoke alarm as directed by the manufacturer, often every eight to ten years
- Ensure windows, screens, and security bars can be easily opened
- Provide fire extinguisher and evacuation routes for tenants
Education can also help prevent fires from damaging your rental property. Caution tenants against unattended candles, space heaters, and similar devices, and make sure they understand the dangers of overloading electrical outlets. Does
Theft and Vandalism
Unfortunately, crime happens. And depending on the level of your building’s security, your apartment could be at an increased risk for vandalism or theft. To defend yourself against potential lawsuits, and protect your investment, take measures to prevent theft and vandalism. These can include installing security cameras, hiring one or more security guards, locking the building for everyone except tenants, and thoroughly screening both tenants and employees.
Tenant education can also help avoid lost communal and personal property and damage caused by intruders. Make sure everyone understands why strangers should not be let into the building without a rental agent or supervising resident, and consider adding provisions about renters insurance, unauthorized subletting, extended guest stays, and key copying or sharing in each lease agreement.
Protect Your Investment with Muller Insurance
At the end of the day, disasters can occur, no matter how much we prepare. That’s why it’s so important for landlords to fully insure their apartment buildings. With tenants depending on you and substantial investments on the line, turn to Muller Insurance to get the apartment building insurance you need. To learn more about how we can help protect your apartment building from disaster and risk, request a free quote online or call 201-659-2403 to speak with a representative.