Many security issues have been reported on various rental facilities in recent times. These mainly include kidnappings, muggings, burglary, electrocutions, fires, rape among others. This has made landlords and tenants engage in an ending debate on who is responsible for making the rental premise be safe and secure. Is my landlord responsible for safety and security issues at my rental premise? This is the question asked by many tenants after being invaded by criminals at their rental houses. Although both the landlords and tenants have their respective roles to play to make rental premises secure, the tenants are the core players in making themselves secure because they tend to know more about what happens at the places they stay more than their landlords do. A landlord only comes around when he/she is needed to be consulted to do the repairs and maintenance or usher in a new tenant. Tenants should ensure safety and security at their premises in the following way.
To begin with, tenants should take an initiative of knowing their neighbors. Many crimes are committed by strangers who live in the rental area as visitors to the existing tenants. I have often witnessed strangers coming at my neighbors’ places, and I keep quiet about that only to complain to my landlord later after one of us has been robbed or his/her property stolen by the same people who visit our fellow tenants masquerading as visitors. We could have kept them at bay. Then, is my landlord responsible for the safety and security at my rental place? I have my part as a tenant to play to ensure my security.
Tenants are responsible for the safety and security of their children. They should orientate their children on the hazard places at the rental premise they should avoid going to like ponds, electricity grids, ponds, creeks, etc. Tenants should also teach their children to memorize their numbers and security numbers which may become helpful in cases where the child gets lost or gets kidnapped. They can simply call and get help from relevant authorities.
Electricity and gas appliances also pose safety threats to the tenants and their families. Tenants often experience leakages of gas due to worn out gas pipes, flues, and other fittings. Their houses may also be having faulty electricity sockets, naked wires or short circuits on their electricity fittings. The tenants should not ignore these things, he/she should report to the landlords so that they organize for repair and maintenance of those gadgets. Sometimes tenants ignore these only to complain later when they lose their property through fires or one of their family members being electrocuted. In case there is an outbreak of fire, a tenant should call the hotline numbers to seek help from the firefighting department, or they can alternatively use the fire extinguisher if the fire is manageable.
Tenants are also advised to lock their cars before going away to avoid theft of their valuables left in their vehicles. They should also avoid leaving their items in their automobiles in plain sight as this may encourage theft. They should also use the designated entry gate so that strangers are prevented from entering the rental apartments. Tenants should also avoid making extra copies for their house keys as it may pose a threat especially when one copy falls in the hands of burglars.
The landlord, on the other hand, is required to play his/her part for the safety of the tenants. First, he/she should install surveillance cameras and alarm systems in his/her rental property. The surveillance cameras are important as they record all the activities in the surrounding. It is easy to identify an intruder using this device. On the other hand, alarm systems are important as they will alert everyone in case there is a robbery event. These will scare the robbers from intruding as they fear being noticed.
Some tenants may be having a history of crime, or they are even criminals. They settle at a place and terrorize the residents by engaging in illegal activities. The landlord is required to do a thorough screening of the new tenants to get rid of those tenants with past criminal background.
To ensure total security of the tenants, the landlords should invest in a periphery wall or an electric fence with a manned gate. In this situation, everyone entering the rental area is monitored, and this will avoid the influx of intruders that may cause a security problem to the residence.
Is my landlord responsible for safety and security issues at my home? As we have seen above, the responsibility of safeguarding and securing our rental homes is split between the landlord and the tenant. The house owner is mainly charged with a task of doing maintenance and repairs for worn out equipment as well as installing security measures such as alarms, surveillance cameras that will make their rental homes secure. On the hand, the tenants have their role to play which may include reporting suspicious people as well as proper handling of appliances in their homes like electricity that may cause harm when mishandled.