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

Baton Rouge Resident Holding a Stack of a Decorated Pumpkin and a Jack-o-LanternAlthough there are many different Halloween traditions across the many cultures of America, one of the most popular ones is trick-or-treating. Many kids all across the country— including Baton Rouge— get excited at the prospect of free candy. 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 not only expected, it’s encouraged. And with Halloween around the corner, giving trick-or-treating safety tips is a good way to keep the communication going.

First, should your tenants choose to go out trick-or-treating, there are a few simple safety rules that they should stick to. A safety tip you can give your tenants is for them to use reflective tape on costumes or carry flashlights to help improve visibility while walking down dark streets. It would also be helpful to pass along some good 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. To ensure safety, encourage your tenants to secure all doors, douse any candles, and turn off all electronic decorations before they leave the house. This is because of the danger that unattended candles and electric decorations pose. These things are one of the leading causes of residential fires on Halloween.

The second thing we’re going to look at is how to properly prepare for visitors. This subject is also a part of Halloween that shouldn’t be neglected. As the property owner, the first thing you can do is 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.

Inform your tenants that they can help the kids stay safe 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 idea to confirm if the property’s exterior lights are all in order or if you need to replace any burned-out bulbs. 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, there are tenants that want to be authentic and use candles in their decorating. For cases like these, just make sure that they are placed at a safe distance from where visitors might be walking or standing. It is also crucial that all exterior decorations your tenant hangs up are properly secured. Should a decorative item fall and injure a visitor or an improperly placed candle burn someone or start a fire, then you’d have a huge problem. This could result in (on top of the property damage) a lawsuit against you as the property owner.

There are a few more safety measures your tenant can do 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. A dog can be stressed out by strangers, so it is in the best interest of the pet to be secured. This ensures that nobody gets hurt. In addition to that, you would hate it if you get sued because your tenant’s dog injured someone.

Your tenants should also be informed about what items are considered safe and appropriate for trick-or-treaters of all ages. Usually, store-bought, individually wrapped items are the best. Only make sure that they are big enough to not pose as a choking hazard. In many locations, you can also leave a bowl of treats outside. This would be a good alternative especially 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 an important task that rental property owners must do, it also takes time. Now, because your real estate investing business requires a lot of your time and attention for many things, it might make sense to hire a Baton Rouge property manager. Real Property Management Baton Rouge is an expert in the industry, providing services that allow you to spend your time on more valuable aspects of rental property ownership. Don’t hesitate to contact us online or give us a ring at 225-389-6860 to know more about what we have to offer property owners like yourself.

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.