With the new school year looming, many college students will be moving into their first apartments. While it is a very exciting time, finding the right apartment building can also be an occasion for stress and confusion when comparing different amenities and services. Many who are new to renting focus solely on the mainstays of price, location and size when sorting between new apartment buildings. However, there are other concerns that can have a much longer term effect on not only your comfort and cash flow, but also your continued health and safety. Especially if you are a new renter thinking of living in a large building, a fire alarm and suppression system should be a paramount concern in your search. In 2013, there were 118,000 non-home fires which caused several millions in damage as well as injuring hundreds. Even if you are moving into a brand new building that recently underwent a new fire alarm system installation, you may not be adequately secure. Before moving into your next apartment make sure to ask your property management company some very important questions about the fire alarm system, namely about their fire alarm system monitoring and maintenance.
Does Your Property Manager Hire a Fire Alarm Service?
Even if your prospective apartment has just performed a new fire alarm system installation, it does not mean that your safety is assured. Before you move in you want to understand how your apartment’s fire alarms are monitored. Does the property management have a current contract with a fire alarm monitoring company? Fire monitoring companies automatically contact the local fire department in the event of fire. Or does the apartment only have heat activated sprinklers which are not externally monitored? Depending on the placement of your unit you may want to take extra consideration as to how your property management handles state mandated apartment fire protection regulations. Are they increasing the safety of their tenants by going the extra mile with their fire prevention or are they just doing the bare minimum?
Does Management Keep up Maintenance after a Fire Alarm System Installation
As the old adage goes a ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The same goes with fire prevention. Your property management company needs to be regularly monitoring and provide maintenance to the fire alarms systems to ensure that they are in working order in the event that a fire breaks out. Before signing your lease, ask to see the relevant documentation that shows that your prospective building is regularly inspected by a trained fire alarms system professional. By taking the extra time to double check your individual safety, you will be able to rest a little bit easier once you settle in to your new apartment.