Do you know what to do if there’s a fire in your building?

Recently, there have been multiple incidents in condo and apartment buildings where cigarette butts were thrown from balconies and landed in dry planters … which in turn caught fire (providing us a great opportunity to remind smokers that it is very important that they make sure cigarette debris is always disposed of in a fire proof container and properly extinguished).

 

 

… Be prepared so you know what to do before a fire starts!

 

To prepare yourself so that you know what to do in the event there is a fire in your condo unit you can:

  • Be familiar with all exits from your floor (Plan more than 1 way out — just in case one of the exits is blocked by fire or smoke).
  • In the event you are unable to leave your home, make sure everyone knows to call 9-1-1 for further instruction and assistance.
  • Learn about the fire safety features in your unit and in the building (i.e.) fire alarms, fire sprinklers, location of extinguishers, etc.
  • If you find a fire exit blocked by clutter or a door requires repair, contact your property manager immediately.
  • Purchase a multi-purpose fire extinguisher for your kitchen and keep it accessible.
  • Test your smoke alarm monthly by pressing the test button and clean it every 6 months. Mark it on your calendar so that you don’t forget and make it a habit of changing your batteries at least annually. Remember that your alarm won’t be able to protect you if it has no power or the batteries are burnt out.

House fires kill and injure thousands every year … and many more are impacted by the loss of valued memories and personal possessions in fire related incidents that could have easily been avoided. In a fire, every second counts … make sure your fire safety knowledge is up to date by visiting the Fire Prevention Canada website for more information.

Reminder: Your condominium bylaws (and your mortgage) outline your responsibility to carry adequate insurance.  It is recommended that you review the Bylaws with your insurance agent to make sure that you have the right coverage in place.
           
Emerald Management & Realty Ltd., has partnered with Nuera Insurance to help provide a convenient way to purchase insurance in a matter of minutes! To receive a quote on-line, visit Nuera’s website and click on “Get a Quote”.  For our valued clients, please contact your property manager to receive a discount code for your insurance policy placed with Nuera.  If you have questions about your insurance responsibilities, please contact our property manager or review your bylaws for more information.


Congratulations to April’s Resident Manager of the Month!

Congratulations to Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.’s Resident Manager of the Month for April 2018: Ziggy S.

 

Ziggy has been the on-site manager for a condominium property located in the dynamic community of Mission, located in Calgary, AB for OVER 15 years.  Ziggy is responsive to building issues and always works in the best interest of the owners to make sure that the property is keep in top-notch condition for the enjoyment of each and every resident.

From all of us at Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. and the Board of Directors – Congratulations Ziggy!


Security Tips to Improve Peace of Mind

Condo and apartment lifestyle is certainly different than living in a single family home.  One thing they do share is the importance placed on safety and peace of mind when it comes to security.

Safety and security is a responsibility shared by each one of us and should be kept top of mind to keep yourself, your property (the entire property) and your neighbors safe.   Please help protect yourself and your neighbors by considering some basic steps that can help deter suspicious and/or illegal activity:

  1. Suspicious activity should be reported to the non-emergency police line at 403-266-1234, and then to your property manager.  If a break-in is imminent and/or in progress — call 911.  If you have experienced a break-in, please report it to the police.
  2. If you don’t know them … please don’t let them in.  No one should follow you in the front door or into the parking areas without request.  You might to consider saying “Hello” to people trying to follow you into the property, as criminals hate being engaged. This is also a great reason to get to know your neighbors.
  3. Keep vehicles free of valuables and personal items when they are left parked.  This includes documents with personal information, garage door openers, keys, etc. (… just make sure you have the necessary documentation with you when you drive!)  When you have removed valuables from your vehicle, consider placing a sign visible to potential thieves that says: “All valuables have been removed”.  
  4. Protect yourself and your property. Lock all your doors and windows when you are not at home and be mindful of open doors and windows when you are home.  Even if you are above the ground floor, a balcony can still be a target for theft or intrusion. If you notice a door property open or not locking securely, let your building or property manager know right away about the security risk.
  5. Be aware of your surroundings. If you see someone that doesn’t belong, please take note.  Contractors should all have identification and we can’t imagine anyone that would mind identifying themselves when respectfully asked if they belong in the building or on the property.  Report any suspicious people.  This builds a strong case for getting to know your neighbors.  If you see someone behaving strangely, don’t hesitate to contact the police.
  6. Be mindful of the lighting and landscaping in and around your property. Report any burnt out bulbs, damaged lighting or overgrown landscaping.  Proper lighting and smart landscaping is a very good deterrent to crime.  Notify your building or property manager about dimmed, burnt out lights or maintenance issues to help to improve everyone’s safety.

These 6 tips are all great safety and no (even low) cost measures that can be put into practice for condominium community, even your single family home or multi-family rental property.

For clients of Emerald Management & Realty Ltd., issues that require attention can be reported to any of our property management team members at 403-237-8600 (24-hour emergency line) or by completing our online Maintenance Request Form.

By taking steps to treat the entire building exactly as would your home, these simple security measures could save you and your neighbors from avoidable damage and even theft and improve your sense of security.


Tips to get your Rental Unit “Rent Ready”

Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. strives to maintain a high standard of cleanliness in the buildings that under management. While some Resident Managers are responsible for the cleanliness of common areas and prepare vacant suites themselves, other larger rental communities may have cleaning staff or third party contractors who fulfill this need. In either situation, it is ultimately the Owner or the Property Manager’s responsibility to ensure that all of the following expectations are addressed to maintain pride of home for residents and maximize the first impression of prospective renters.

When it comes to getting a property rent ready, the goal in an ideal world is to have the unit in rent ready condition on or before the first of the month.  An inspection mid-month prior to the tenant moving out provides a great opportunity to see what work will be required.  Recognizing that a variety of factors may impact a tenant moving out, it is recommended that the cleaning services and repairs are scheduled in advance to accomodate a 24-hour turnover.   

If “life happens” (and it often does) you may may need to discuss options with the incoming tenant to work around them, especially in a tight rental market where turnovers are tightly timed.    In a softer rental market where vacancy is higher sometimes you have the luxury of time, but to maximize rental showings the goal should be to have suites cleaned within three days of vacancy. First impressions matter and the propsective renter should feel positive if the unit is in great condition or they can see that renovations and repairs are underway.

During suite preparation, thoroughly inspect each room from the light fixtures to the baseboards.  It is important to make sure all elements of a room are clean and in good state of repair. While doing your checks, be sure the smoke detectors are working and change the batteries (if required) to ensure proper function. In cooler months, double check that the heaters are working, the baseboard heater panels are straight and free of dust, and set the thermostat appropriately for the weather conditions.

An area that often gets over looked is a deep cleaning of kitchen appliances.  Fridges should be cleaned (don’t forget the seals) and if needed, the icebox must be defrosted.  Keep the fridge plugged in and running while the suite is vacant. A box of baking soda or open jar of coffee beans will help with odors.  Range hoods should be in working order and free of grease and oil, this also includes the oven and trays under the elements.  Make sure to clean the wall behind appliances and the flooring underneath.

Its important to triple check all of the hard surfaces too.  The cleanliness of the floors is very important.  Strip and wax hard surfaces,  or polish tile if necessary. Ensure that the carpet has been professional cleaned as the carpet cleaning equipment rented from local grocery stores often just doesn’t do the job. Windows should shine and drapes or blinds checked for good working condition. Clean ridges in patio doors and dust drapery rods. Bathrooms should be spotless and lime stains removed with products like “Lime Away” or “CLR”.

Last but not least … make sure to remove any items left behind by the former tenant and/or any of your own personal property if you are renting your unit for the first time. This includes: shower curtains and hooks, foil on the stove, coat hangers, toilet paper, nails in the wall, etc.,.  While the unit is vacant, make sure to check the suite regularily and be mindful of insurance requirements. 

For more information on how Emerald Management & Realty Ltd., can help you with the management of your rental asset, please contact us at 403-237-8600 or complete our on-line Request for Proposal


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