Kitchen fires account for 50 percent of all rental property fires each year. Tenants start cooking, get distracted, and unwittingly start dangerous and destructive fires. You can’t remove kitchens from your properties, but implementing preventive measures to minimize fire risk is essential to tenant safety and protecting your property.
Start a conversation
Practice excellent customer service to keep the lines of communication open and provide helpful tips to raise awareness and safety protocols, including the following:
- Reminding residents to never leave anything cooking on the stove, even for a minute.
- Sharing the latest statistics, highlighting how unattended cooking is responsible for the most deaths.
- Asking for regular feedback on how cooking equipment works and sharing tips on cleaning and maintenance.
Your safety conversation should include educating tenants on your property’s specific emergency plan and how tenants can protect their lives and possessions.
Establish an emergency plan
Allow for human mistakes, and walk new tenants through what to do in case of kitchen fires. Provide a fire extinguisher, and teach them how to use it and when. Help residents report a fire and evacuate quickly by posting metal signs on every stairwell and each floor.
Provide incentives for renters’ insurance
Encourage tenants to purchase renters’ insurance (or make it mandatory) and provide some resources at lease signing. Consider offering a discount on rent for those with an active renters’ insurance policy. After a fire, if investigators determine that a tenant’s negligence started a fire, the tenant’s insurance will pick up the bill. Just make sure their policy covers fire due to negligence. It will be worth a small monthly discount in the long run.
Make fire prevention and response a significant part of your maintenance and tenant communication plans to prevent catastrophic damage and loss of life. Also, bring employees into the planning and training efforts to keep tenants and staff on the same page and ensure rapid response in an emergency.
Protect your property from kitchen fires by working with Class A Management
Property managers play a vital role in protecting your property investment. If you’re ready to have your property managed properly, contact the asset management experts at Class A Management.
Our comprehensive management strategies include helping you develop safety procedures specific to your property. We also create local connections with insurance agents to provide the resources your tenants need to find affordable insurance. We will help you in every way to create an environment that prevents kitchen fires.