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Should Your Parsippany Tenants be Burning Leaves?

A Rake Resting on a Pile of Colorful Autumn LeavesAutumn brings brightly colored trees and piles of fallen leaves. But that prompts the question: What do we do with these fallen leaves now that we’ve raked them up? One really popular disposal method to get rid of the unwanted leaves is to burn them. But as a Parsippany rental property owner, you shouldn’t allow your tenants to be the ones to gather their leaves and burn them. Yes, burning the leaves will help dispose of them quickly and it may be really convenient. The drawback is that it could also be a very dangerous task for your tenants to do. However, if you help your tenant understand the safe and proper way of leaf disposal, you’ll be protecting them and your property at the same time.

Any type of open flame carries a certain amount of risk. But there are a number of property owners that think they can minimize the risks by following certain safety precautions. One such precaution is to burn fallen leaves on a clear patch of dirt with no overhanging branches or power lines. Property owners would prepare this area beforehand. Then they’ll select a day that falls within a permitted burn timeline set by local governmental agencies, when winds are calm, and keep a garden hose on hand in case the flames get out of control.

However, precautions aren’t guarantees. If the fire ever gets out of control, you’re still likely to suffer property damage. Especially in dry conditions. There can be a soft breeze blowing and that would be enough wind to carry sparks into dry foliage, sparking dry grasses and other materials that are often abundant during the fall. Whenever you’re dealing with open flames, you are endangering your tenant, their pets, or even neighbors and strangers that happen to be nearby. And if the fire becomes unruly, it may grow beyond your property boundaries, making the risk shoot up. If things don’t go as smoothly as intended and someone suffers an injury or if there is property damage, then you’ll be in a predicament. As the property owner, you may be held liable for medical costs, legal fees, and other related expenses. You’ll have to add the cost of that liability with the cost of the repairs to fix up your rental home. That potential cost is just very risky that it should strongly discourage you from permitting leaf burning as a disposal method.

These risks alone already provide a compelling reason to ban leaf burning on your rental property but there are even more reasons to back that decision. For example, the smoke from burning leaves can produce toxic gases that can irritate the eyes, nose, and throat, and even trigger respiratory distress in individuals with asthma or other conditions. Those same toxic gases also get released into the atmosphere and are bad for the environment. It has been shown that burning leaves has a negative impact on both local and global ecosystems. After recognizing the drawbacks of burning leaves, some local governments have started banning leaf burning outright. Other areas still allow it but they’ve limited it to certain months, designated locations, or to a certain size. Violating these municipal restrictions can result in fines and other legal consequences.

When burning leaves is a bad idea, you’ll need to look for other options. There are other safer ways to deal with fallen leaves. Many property owners bought a mulching lawnmower and use it to shred the fallen leaves. This reduces the number of leaves that they need to rake. This manages the number of leaves that need to be removed since this approach turns it into fertilizer for your lawn instead. Alternatively, if your property has enough space, is you can compost your fallen leaves. Select an unused corner away from the house and do it there. A third option is to hire a clean-up crew to go to the property and haul your fallen leaves away. This is a good and efficient option but involves additional expense.

Whichever method you end up choosing would be okay as long as the fallen leaves on your Parsippany rental property are being raked up and properly disposed of. Leaving them all over the ground may result in safety issues while attracting pests and killing your landscape. But the kind of leaf disposal program you choose must be one that does not create additional liability. At Real Property Management NJ Elite, we can work on the more time-consuming tasks – including leaf disposal – for you. While we’re doing that, you can spend your time working on what’s most important for your real estate investing business. If you want to know more about what we can do to serve you, don’t hesitate to contact us online or call us at 908-955-7487.

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