Landlords and residents alike have been warned about using space heaters many times. They are dangerous and one of the leading causes of deadly accidents prompting some homeowners to prohibit the use of space heaters in a rental home. The stories are all too common: a family going to bed, their space heater making sure that they are kept warm – and then they never wake up. Either the electric heater has malfunctioned and filled the home with toxic fumes, or it has unknowingly ignited an electrical fire leaving the family confined with little chance of escape. The last thing any Castro Valley property owner needs is to find that such an unfortunate circumstance has happened to their residents.
Standard protocols consider electric heaters to be the safer option for residential use than fuel-based models. But even electric heaters have strict guidelines and safety procedures that must be followed to ensure safety. Children and pets are the ones that are at most risk to injuries caused by space heaters, which puts any resident with a family or a pet at risk. Besides, there’s no assurance that your residents will know or even follow the recommended safety practices or use the space heater according to how it ought to be managed which could then lead to horrible outcomes.
Banning space heaters is not only a wise safety measure but also an important part of protecting yourself and your real estate investment. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has estimated that over 25,000 residential fires are caused by space heaters each year. These fires result in more than 300 deaths and 6,000 emergency room visits annually. While some of these injuries are burns from touching a space heater unit, others are far more serious.
You as a rental property owner bear a high risk of liability if you let your residents utilize space heaters. While your landlord’s insurance covers the damage to the rental home itself, if a space heater has caused any loss of life or serious injury, that may result in further legal action against you. Lawsuits alleging negligence or graver liabilities could put you in jeopardy and not just financially, but also in some cases, your freedom.
Regular property evaluations are crucial to protecting your property from the dangers presented by space heaters. At Real Property Management Masters, regular evaluations are a foundational piece of our property management program. We believe that the safety of your residents is a top priority, as is protecting you and your investment from the dangers of noncompliance. Contact us online or call us at 510-398-8704 to learn more about what we can do for you.