A long time landlord calls with a new problem.

He says: At this point, I have 3 apartments for rent out of my 10 unit building. Two of the prospective new tenants have asked how I sanitized the apartments. I told them I cleaned them completely as I usually do. Both said that they did not consider that sufficient. I told them I would investigate it. Any info or suggestions?

Mac says: We are in the “Making it up as we go along” stage with this Corona thing. If the prospective tenant looks good, find out which cleaning products are deemed most effective and wipe the touchable areas down with a clean cloth or sponge. However, Lysol concentrate is hard to find. I am sure that there are other solutions that will kill the virus on hard surfaces. Hopefully, this will satisfy them.

As far as I know, there are no hard and fast rules regarding this situation. I would not, however, tell her the apartment is guaranteed Corona free. You might be setting yourself up for some sort of liability. Good Luck. If you get any useful information, please share it with me and I will pass it on.

Selkirk calls with a doorbell problem. My tenants (2) want new doorbells that take pictures when someone rings it. Are they expensive and do I have to provide them?

Mac says: I do not know the cost, there are probably several types in various price ranges depending on the features. As far as I know NOW, they are not required by code. I would advise checking out the cost. Ask yourself if these tenants are desirable enough to keep happy. Given the current situation, you do not want to lose good tenants. Also, was there an incident that caused your tenants to request this type of bell? I would advise you to do it, it will be a selling point the next time you rent out those apartments.

Downtown Troy asks a fire escape question.

I have a 4 unit rowhouse in Troy. My top floor tenant has complained that the third floor tenant keeps her garbage can on the fire escape landing along with some potted plants and a couple of mops. She says she could not get by if there was an emergency.

Mac says: She is right. Nothing may be stored on the fire escape. The same thing goes for hallways and anywhere else that is considered an escape route. Inform your tenant immediately that it all must be removed.

Prepare for Winter. Make arrangements for snow and ice removal. Make sure all handrails on stairs in in place and secure. If you have any appliances that vent close to the ground, make sure snow does not block them. Be sure, if you have parking next to a building, be sure that snow is not plowed up against the vents.
See you next month.