Natural disasters are unfortunately a reality landlords and renters alike must face. With recent events across the nation like Hurricane Florence, Mother Nature has left many landlords wondering what their role is both before and after natural disaster strikes. From hurricane preparedness to protecting a home from wildfires to what happens to a rental lease when a property is damaged, TurboTenant has compiled everything a landlord needs to know before and after a natural disaster.
While some natural disasters strike suddenly with little to no warning, such as a spring tornado, other disasters are predicted well before their arrival. In the case of hurricanes, for example, modern technology and science allow residents the chance to prepare before the storm reaches their property.
Anyone who owns rental property in an area that is in the path of a natural disaster, take note of the following disaster-specific instructions.
There is only so much that can be done by the landlord to prepare tenants for a hurricane or tropical storm. While ultimately they must take responsibility for their own safety, landlords can provide them with instructions on how to best prepare their rental home. Landlords can also provide the materials needed to protect a home during hurricanes if they own properties in a hurricane-prone area.
- Direct tenants to the hurricane section of Ready.gov, which will help them prepare a family plan, evacuation plan and safety plan
- Be sure any damaged trees or old branches are trimmed on the property. Hire someone to remove all damaged limbs and trees as these will quickly become dangerous debris during high winds.
- Make sure gutters and siding are secure. Repair any damaged components prior to the storm.
- Install hurricane shutters.
- Ask tenants to secure any outdoor furniture or items that could be thrown around. This includes patio sets, grills, children’s toys, etc.
- Let tenants know that if they have renters insurance, it is in their best interest to take photos of everything they own before they evacuate. This will make the process of filing claims much easier.A