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The Ultimate Guide To Pool Maintenance And Safety

Hello, property and potential property owners! Welcome to the RPM Distinguished Care blog, where we provide practical advice about property management! If you’re a return visitor, welcome back. We sincerely appreciate your support! RPM Distinguished Care specializes in managing successful rental properties in and around the Charleston area. We’re here to make your lives easier by giving you the resources you need to maximize profitability and have a successful rental property. We provide comprehensive property management services at every conceivable level. From advertising and marketing to responding to applications, to inspecting and maintaining properties–there’s nothing we do not do. Further, we ensure tenant compliance, handle necessary evictions, and report directly back to you about revenue and profit potentials. We aim to make owning rental property as easy for you as possible, for as little money as possible. Check out the rest of our site to meet our team and discover what makes RPM Distinguished Care the best property management company in Charleston!

 

In our last post, we discussed 6 terms that should be included in your lease agreement.  A lease is a legal contract between a tenant and their landlord. It outlines the terms which the tenant agrees to in order to rent a property for a certain period of time, typically covering a period of 6 or 12 months. A strong, well-worded lease is essential to ensure that both parties’ best interests are protected. If you are interested in learning about some specific terms that should be included in a lease, check out our last post!

 

Today, we’ll be discussing pool maintenance and safety. It’s officially summer! It’s hot out there, and your tenants probably want to cool off. Having a pool is a great amenity for a rental property– It can make tenants happier, comfortable, and more relaxed, and it can add value to your property. A pool also provides an opportunity for higher rent and can attract tenants who can pay higher rents. As a landlord or property manager, it is your responsibility to keep up with pool maintenance and safety, but the tenant has some responsibilities as well. All of these responsibilities should be outlined in the lease. But don’t worry; We’ve compiled everything you need to know! Let’s get started.

 

Landlord Responsibilities

 

The landlord, property owner, or property manager carries most of the responsibility when it comes to pool maintenance and safety. As a landlord, you are responsible for maintaining the pool’s overall function, sanitation, safety, and equipment. Let’s take a look at some of the main areas of maintenance needed.

 

  • Balancing Water pH: Balanced water chemistry is one the most important parts of pool maintenance. A pH level is the measurement of acidity in the pool’s water. It is measured on a scale of 0-14, with 7 being neutral. You should monitor the pH level frequently to maintain a constant neutral level. A pool’s pH level should ideally be between 7.2 and 7.6. During the summer, you should test the pH level weekly. The pool’s acidity can affect a swimmer’s skin, with the potential to cause irritation. Additionally, if the pool becomes too acidic, it can cause corrosion and damage to pool surfaces, equipment, and plumbing. You can check the pH balance with a test kit, which measures pH, chlorine, calcium hardness, and total alkalinity. Pool chemicals can help you balance the pH, but they can be dangerous to humans and animals. Store pool chemicals in a safe place and wear gloves and goggles while using them. 
  • Keeping The Pool Clean: You want the water to be clear and inviting for your tenants, so make sure to clean it regularly. Three ways to keep up with cleaning are through filtration, skimming, and vacuuming. Every pool should have a filter system that circulates water in and out of the pool to remove contaminants and minimize the growth of bacteria. Be sure to check and clean the filter. This should typically be done at least once per month during swimming season. In addition to this, you should regularly use a skimmer to remove leaves and other debris in the water that may be too large to pass through the filtration system. This should be done once per week. Finally, investing in a good pool vacuum will help remove debris from the bottom of the pool, as well as the walls and steps. 
  • Maintaining Water Level: Of course, your tenants need enough water to swim in. Pools are constantly losing water due to evaporation and splashing. Additionally, after a heavy rainstorm, there may be too much water. Because of this, it is important to consistently keep an eye on the water level. Ideally, the water level should be halfway up the skimmer plate– This is the rectangular opening built onto the side of the pool wall. If the water level is too high, the skimmer will be unable to suck in the debris, making it stick around in the pool. If the water level is too low, the skimmer will not only suck in debris, but also air. When air enters the circulation system, it can exhaust your pool pump. 

 

Now, let’s take a look at the safety side of things. Having a pool on your rental property can increase your liability as a property owner. Because of this, you’ll want to take some precautions.

  • Install A Gate: Whether your rental property is a single-family home or an apartment complex, you’ll want to install a self-closing and self-latching pool gate. Consider adding a fence that is at least four feet tall and is unable to be climbed. Be sure to look up the laws pertaining to your state. In South Carolina, all residential pools must have a fence or enclosure that is no less than 48 inches in height. 
  • Post Signs: Be sure to post signs around the pool area that emphasize the pool rules. This may include things such as “no diving” and “children must be supervised at all times”. Most community pools list hours that the pool is open for use. Again, be sure to check local regulations. 
  • Provide Rescue Equipment: Even if you do everything possible to keep your tenants safe, accidents and emergencies can still happen. Therefore, it is important to keep a first aid kit, lifesaver rings, or other safety equipment nearby in a clearly marked area.

 

Tenant Responsibilities

 

Typically, landlords or property managers take on the bulk of responsibility when it comes to pool maintenance and safety. However, you can require tenants to take on some responsibility if you wish– Just make sure it is clearly listed in the lease. Some landlords require their tenants to keep up with things such as balancing water pH, while others do it themselves or hire a company to take care of it. Here are a few things you may want to outline in the lease agreement when it comes to the pool.

 

  • Clearly state that tenants, visitors, pets, and anyone else using the swimming pool is doing so at their own risk. You can also reinforce this by adding a sign that says “use at your own risk” in the pool area.
  • Tenants should notify the landlord immediately if they notice any issues with the pool or equipment. 
  • Require tenants to lock the gate after they leave the pool area. Reinforce this by adding a sign next to the gate reminding them to do so.

 

You may want to consider giving all new tenants a “pool safety pack” brochure or pamphlet upon move-in. This should outline all of their responsibilities as well as list emergency contact information, and you may even include instructions for CPR in case of an emergency. These instructions can also be posted in the pool area.

 

As you can see, having a pool on your rental property can be a great addition for both you and your tenants, but it can also be a lot of work. It is incredibly important to keep up with maintenance so that your pool can stay in pristine condition.

 

We hope you found this article helpful. If you are a rental property owner looking for assistance in managing your property, feel free to reach out to us! RPM Distinguished Care specializes in residential property management and offers a range of services including communication, marketing, and advertising, thorough tenant screening and selection, full-service leasing, timely rent collection, regular evaluations, cost-effective and reliable maintenance, strict and compliant evictions, and comprehensive accounting. We utilize an online portal for owners to keep track of their property, including access to reports and financial statements. With over 30 years of experience, we know how to keep your property at its best. We believe in full-service and comprehensive property management. That’s why we take the time to understand each of our clients and help identify their most closely-held goals. Let us give you peace of mind that your property is in good hands. Use our website to request your free assessment and meet with our expert team! Thank you for taking the time to read this article and we hope to hear from you soon! See you next time!

 

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.