There’s nothing quite anything that says Halloween like a glowing jack o’ lantern. However, notwithstanding their popularity, jack o’ lanterns can present serious safety risks to tenants and rental houses alike. As a Dahlonega rental property owner, it is very important to let your tenants know more about what to do to avoid fires and injuries. By sharing a few safety tips, you can better assist your tenants in enjoying their holiday celebrations without accident or injury.
Jack o’ lanterns are common holiday decorations which are often commonly put on porches, patios, and railings, and are traditionally lit with small candles. But placing carved pumpkins next to doorways, walkways, and other easily accessed areas can result in several safety hazards. For instance, carved pumpkins can deteriorate in just a few days, creating a slimy mess of rotting pumpkin that can make stairs and sidewalks slippery. Pumpkins can also draw hornets and other pests, insects that will sting or bite if disturbed.
Adding candles to a jack o’ lantern is another safety issue, particularly if the pumpkins are placed too close to doorways where the costumes or clothing of visitors could catch fire. Every year, Halloween decorations cause an estimated $13 million in property damage, dozens of injuries, and even deaths. Fortunately, there is a lot you and your tenants can do to counteract such a disaster.
One of the best methods to prevent pumpkin-related messes and spills is to restrict the number of times that carved pumpkins are left sitting outside. The longer the pumpkin is exposed to the elements, the more likely that it will start to rot or attract unwanted pests. If your tenants are planning to carve and display pumpkins, encourage them to wait until just before Halloween to set them outside, and then to dispose of them immediately afterward properly. This can help keep doorways and walkways free of stinging insects and slippery spills.
A different option would be to promote to your tenants to carve hardshell gourds or craft pumpkins, preferably as compared to the real thing. Gourds don’t break down and rot as pumpkins do, which means they can be safely exposed for much more extended periods. Craft pumpkins look like the real thing but are made of foam or other materials that last. These can also be carved or decorated and displayed safely year after year since they never decay.
While these measures can help diminish many risks, possibly the most prominent safety issue with jack o’ lanterns is when they are lit. Candles have long been the illumination source of choice for carved pumpkins, but their open flames can create a serious fire hazard. If your tenants plan to use candles in their decorations, make sure that they know first to take important precautionary measures.
Tenants should clear away dry leaves and other debris from the area where lit pumpkins will be placed. They should also learn the significance of never leaving lit candles unattended, and to place them at a safe distance from doorways and walkways. Of course, one of the most reliable options would be to encourage your tenants to use an alternative lighting source, such a glow sticks, which are non-flammable, do not use batteries or electricity, and are weatherproof. Glow sticks can also be used to illuminate craft pumpkins, unlike candles, which should never be used in these decorations.
Carving and displaying jack o’ lanterns is an enjoyable part of Halloween, but only if it is executed cautiously. Teaching your tenant on jack o’ lantern safety is an essential job, but one that takes time. If, as they say, time is money, then you may well wonder if tenant education is the best use of your valuable time. Instead, consider hiring Real Property Management Stellar to do it for you. Our comprehensive property management services include essential safety advice to your tenants, helping you keep them and your property free from injury and fire hazards. To learn more about what we have to offer Dahlonega property owners like you, contact us now.
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