Money and Finance

Published on April 29th, 2009 | by Guest Contributor


Write Sustainable House Rules Into Your Rental Agreement

If you are renting out your home, then you probably want your tenants to take as good care of it as you would.  Now you might be a green living pro but remember, not every tenant espouses the same values. Even if they did share your green lifestyle, tenants can slip up when renting a property.  So what can you do? As the landlord specify your green home rules in the rental contract.

photo credit: tifotterFor Rent

For Rent

Most rental contracts are ‘standard’ forms from housing associations.  They contain a whole lot of legalize which has nothing to do with green living.  However, eco-conscious landlords will typically write green home rules into an addendum.  Whether you are renting out a house or an apartment, here are some green home rules that you will want to be sure to include:

1.    No Smoking: Smoking by Tenants or their guests is not allowed in the house , apartment or any common areas.

2.    Abrasive Cleansers:  Tenants shall not use abrasive cleansers (such as Ajax or other scouring powders) on sinks, bathtubs, shower stalls or ceramic tile.  You might want to recommend approved green cleaning products such as Seventh Generation or Method.

3.    Water Conservation: Tenants shall continue to ensure their water usage is reasonable and not unnecessarily waste water.  Tenants shall promptly notify Owner if they observe any water leaks.

4.    Toilet Stoppages:  Tenants shall ensure that non-biodegradable waste is not flushed down toilet.  Tenants shall pay for correcting toilet stoppages and associated repairs should stoppage be attributable to such waste.

5.    Water Hoses: If water hoses are provided for Tenants use, Tenant shall ensure water supply is shut off after usage and hose is depressurized.

6.    Hot Water Heaters:  Tenants shall promptly notify Owner should they observe water leaking from a hot water heater.  No storage is permitted in proximity to the hot water heaters or gas-fired furnaces as such storage presents a potential fire hazard.

7.    Recycling:  Tenants are encouraged to use recycling bins for paper, cardboard, glass, metal and number 1 and 2 plastics.  Non-recycable materials (e.g., stryofoam and plastic bags) should not be placed in the recycling bin.

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