The Block Is Hot
Making sure your fire extinguishers are able to help cool things down for your tenants.
One of the best things to have in a home for all around safety purposes is a fire extinguisher. The potential for a fire hazard exists all around us, even in the safety of our home. It can happen due to any number of potential reasons, including incidents in the kitchen, electrical problems due to power surges, or poor wiring gets too hot. A property manager is responsible for safeguards in the home to prevent fires from these reasons. It is also their responsibility to provide fire extinguishers in the apartment building. That’s not just an ethical statement; it is actually part of the lease agreement on their end.
As a property manager, it is your obligation to make sure a rental unit is in a safe habitable condition and not lacking any specific safety measures. This includes having working and up-to-date fire extinguishers. It counts as a habitability problem and while time needs to be given to the manager to fix the problem, it can be used as an intent to withhold rent. A non-inspected and re-certified fire extinguisher is a serious defect. Tenants can withhold rent, using this defect as an excuse. It is also extremely dangerous in the event of an emergency fire.
OSHA and Fire Codes have different requirements when inspecting fire extinguishers. The property manager or any on-site employees can perform a monthly check, but annual inspections are a different story. A certified professional must carry out the annual maintenance of fire extinguishers. Technicians will typically possess the certification document as a record of their credentials, renewed every 3 years. Albany Fire Extinguishers gives a rundown of what is normally checked during these procedures in the link below.