Rental Property & Tenant Safety – Landlord’s Risk
Landlords are in a difficult position regarding their exposure to personal injury claims from tenants for visitors to their property as they can be included in a claim or even held responsible even though they do not actively manage or visit the property. This is because they have a clear responsibility to ensure that the Tenant is provided with a safe property and free from issues that they should have reasonably been known about, irrespective of whether they personally inspected the property.
Landlords cannot merely rely upon the Property Manager to be able to avoid the risk via arguing that “I was paying a professional property manager to look after the property, so it was their responsibility!” The courts have demonstrated that line of defence will not usually be upheld. All stakeholders need to be pro-active and remove the risk completely
Self-managing landlords are significantly more exposed and, unless they have the specific experience in inspecting properties for safety issues, they have a much higher probability of being included in a claim. In such a situation, any successful claim will be directly focused upon them and not apportioned with an agency.
Irrespective, whether the landlord was or was not contributory to the injury, one thing is certain, being that they will need to spend a very significant amount of time and cost preparing for and defending their actions. If they lose, then the situation moves to a totally different level regarding the magnitude of the claim and their ability to meet that claim. It is important to be aware that some personal injury claims have been awarded whole of life damages approaching $30M in recent years.
The majority of building insurance policies include wording that if a claim occurs as a result of something that you knew, or should have known about, the claim can be reduced or rejected.
Do not risk your valuable asset or simply your time and money!
The procedures are quite simple, landlords need to be aware of the property condition and potential hazards. Property inspections are core to this, either identifying the risks or confirming the property is safe. You will then have the knowledge and the ability to act accordingly and hence truly addressing the risks.
Failure to act could result in you facing a very expensive and time consuming claim and its associated stresses. The growing number of solicitors focusing on the “no win – no fee” philosophy and the fact that recent Coroner recommendations are highlighting the need for external inspections will drive additional claims.
Now, a single, clear and actionable report on rental property safety hazards that addresses the needs of Landlords.
Introducing PropertySafe… a world first initiative directly focused on ensuring that you and your investment are protected. PropertySafe provides a detailed safety inspection and risk management system for the residential rental property market that virtually ensures, if followed, a landlord will not have a successful personal injury claim against them. In fact, even the likelihood for a claim to be made against a landlord will be significantly reduced.
The PropertySafe inspection and system, if utilised, will virtually eliminate the risk from personal injury claims for landlords.
Recognising that the majority of landlords are not qualified, trained or equipped to assess the many risks associated with areas like decks & balconies, glass, steps, pools, handrails, fire alarms, gas leaks, or safety switches etc…….. PropertySafe removes this key exposure for the landlord.
Currently, under existing legalisation, several groups inspect properties for specific isolated risks. With PropertySafe, our inspection covers 16 potential hazard groups, including the legislated requirements, resulting in a single comprehensive report that summarises all the visible safety hazards found within a subject property. Landlords are already incurring costs to ensure their risks are minimised in 1 or 2 areas, smoke alarms and pool fencing. For a minor additional cost you can have total peace of mind and have the property checked for another 14 or 15 hazard groups, ensuring you are fulfilling your duty to provide a save home for your tenants.
To facilitate ease of use, the report identifies all recommended actions to ensure a property is safe and compiles them into a separate “Action” list plus produces an item specific quote document, with suitable photos and comments, to streamline the review, approval and repair cycle.
The PropertySafe inspections are undertaken by experienced and certified inspectors using a purpose developed mobile app, ensuring that every report follows a standard format, resulting in accurate and thorough reporting every time.
Don’t put yourself at Risk. PropertySafe has the solution that every landlord needs to ensure that their investment is not at risk of claims. Talk to your Property Manager about how PropertySafe can help you today.