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What To Look For In Safe Student Housing

April 27, 2016

In the early part of the summer, it’s not uncommon for students to begin looking for their fall homes where they can live as they start their next school semester. When you’re ready to take that step, it’s important to make sure you see the housing you want to live in before you agree to any arrangements. Make sure not to sign any contracts until you’ve been inside the property.

Why is that so important? Problems with the housing can lead to serious consequences. In fact, off-campus housing is known to be prone to fires, and those fires have killed 120 people since 2000 alone. Ninety-four percent of the fatal campus fires took place off campus between 2000 and 2015. Most of those situations may have been avoided with the right inspections before moving in.

There are some things you should look for immediately upon moving. First, look for working smoke alarms. If your smoke alarm fails, you could find yourself without a way out of a burning building. There should be a smoke detector on every floor and inside each bedroom. Check the batteries, too.

Remember that each room should have two ways out. Double check that your windows and doors can be easily opened in an emergency.

Another important thing to remember is that if multiple electrical items are going to be used, it’s wise to check that the electrical units in the home are updated. If they aren’t, they may be overloaded by the power being used, and that can lead to a house fire from overuse.

Source: U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, “See It Before You Sign It,” accessed April 27, 2016

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