Renter Responsibilities

It is your responsibility to take care of your rental property properly and to learn how to use all of the appliances and features.

Three items that every renter should have:
1) A safe stepladder to change your light bulbs and batteries.
2) A GOOD toilet plunger.  A good toilet plunger is the black kind with an inner ring that is strong enough to not buckle when you apply pressure.  This can be purchased at any hardware store for less than $10.
3) A tool to remove hair from your drains.  There are several simple kinds that you just stick down the drain and twist around and the ‘grab’ the hair and bring it back up.  This can be purchased at most any hardware store for less than $10.

Below are some basic instructions and links to help you care for your home:

Please know that if an appliance, system, feature or any part of the rental fails due to misuse or failure to properly maintain, the resident will be charges for repair and/or replacement.

If you need any further instruction or assistance, please do not hesitate to send an email to maintenance.

Dishwasher:
1) The dishwasher does NOT have a garbage disposal.  This means you need to COMPLETLY rinse all dishes.  The dishwasher is for sanitizing and not for food disposal.  Failure to properly rinse foods will clog the pipes and can burn out the dishwasher motor.
2) Utensils and small items need to be placed in special holders or they will fall to the bottom and get ruined and possibly ruin the machine.
3) You must use soap that is designed for a dishwasher.  Hand dishwashing soap will over suds and overflow the machine.  You need to use the amount instructed or even less.  Using more will not help clean your dishes.
4) Search for a website that teaches you how to properly load your dishwasher.  You need to make sure the water can reach all parts of the machine.  A large pot or pan on the bottom shelf will block the water from doing a good job cleaning on the top shelf.  Many people find that it’s easiest to clean large pots and pans by hand and let the dishwasher be used for table dishes.

Garbage disposal:
1) The garbage disposal is to be used for plate scraping only.  It is not intended for entire pots or large amounts of uneaten foods. It is also not intended to be used for your food prep items that aren’t consumed by people.  You should not put more than a couple of spoonful’s of food down the disposal per day.  ALL uneaten foods, peels, shells, bones, pits, seeds, rinds, etc. should be put in the Colina yard waste dumpster properly wrapped in a green biodegradable bag.  Again, please scrape ALL your food from your plates, serving containers, and cook ware into a container or bag to take to the food waste dumpster.  Then you can rinse the plate or cookware into the sink and use the disposal for the very tiny bit that rinses from the dish.
2) You should ALWAYS run cold water the entire time you have the garbage disposal running.  Never run the disposal for more than 5 seconds at a time.
3) You should never put the following items in the garbage disposal – egg shells, carrot peels, apple peels, bones of any kind, anything crunchy, banana peels, pits or seeds, fruit rinds, cucumber peels, etc.
4) A great rule of thumb is if you wouldn’t put it in your mouth, please don’t put it in the garbage disposal.  Inedible food parts should be put in the food waste dumpster Colina provides.

Change batteries:
1) You should change batteries in your smoke detectors and the carbon monoxide detector twice a year.  You will need a stepladder and a new battery.  Often it is easiest to remember to change the batteries when you set your clocks forward and back in the spring and fall.  If you wait too long the detector will start beeping at you.  This may happen in the middle of the night and you might not have a battery handy.  NEVER EVER unplug or remove a battery without replacing it.  It is the law (and an agreement in your contract) that you maintain these in proper working order for your safety and the safety of your neighbors.
2) When the battery in your electronic front door lock starts running low the lock system will notify you by blinking and beeping differently than normal.  Please notify maintenance IMMEDIATLY if this happens so we can replace the battery for you before you get locked our of your home.  The batteries are supposed to last 5 years plus, but please be on the watch for this.
3) You may also have to change the battery in your thermostat.  You will know this is needed when the thermostat indicates this on the read out.

Preventing molds:
1)  You need to keep your whole house vent system (located with your washer and dryer) on as much as possible.  You can simply push the on and off button or you can use the tabs to have the system come on and off at set times.  Most experts suggest that you have the system bringing in fresh air a minimum of 8 hours a day.  Many experts suggest keeping the whole house fan on 24 hours a day.  In addition you can crack a window to allow fresh air in.  Your house needs to breath fresh air to prevent mold growth.  Common areas to watch for are window corners.  Keeping blinds open part time is also helpful.
2) Be sure to use your bathroom fan during all showers and baths and for at least 1/2 hour after bathing.  Also use a cleaning product that does not require scrubbing for all your caulked areas.  A spray bleach works really well (follow direction on product).  Common areas to watch for are the caulking in the tub or the wall near the shower (if you allow water to spray from shower/tub).
3) Check under your sinks on a regular basis to be sure you don’t have a leak.  An undetected leak can cause a lot of mold quickly.  Do not store items of value under sink areas.
4) Do not overheat your home.  Common temperature setting in colder months range from 60 – 69 F.  Often you can keep your home cooler at night while people are sleeping.  Setting your home to temperatures above 70 degrees F is creating an environment for mold.
5) In addition if you cook a lot or have a lot of humidity in a warm home you may suffer from mold problems.  You may want to purchase a dehumidifier to take some of the moisture out of the air and create a more healthy air quality in your home.
6) Your home does not have air conditioning. So you should turn your thermoset off on hot days.  It might help to keep blinds closed on hot days and then open windows for fresh air as soon as the temperature outside is cooler than inside your condominium.

 

Clogged drains and toilets:
1) Be sure that only small amounts of toilet paper are flushed down toilet.  Small flushable feminine products are also ok.  You should never flush paper towels, pads, baby wipes, medicine wipes or other such items down the toilet.  If there is a large amount to flush you might want to flush once before using the toilet paper and then a second time with the toilet paper.
2) Modern toilets are designed to save water and they do not do a fantastic job of flushing. You will need to keep a GOOD toilet plunger handy as you will need it from time to time.  You should purchase a thick black rubber plunger with a lower inner section that seem to ‘fit’ in the toilet bowl hole.  Cheap plungers and other new fashion designs are not likely to work.  Please search the web for some video’s on how to properly plunge a toilet.
3) Make sure that no toys are put in the toilet and be sure that nothing from the counters can fall off and land in the toilet.  Foreign objects in the toilet may not be solved with a plunger and may need a chargeable service call.
4) Bathtub and sink drains are designed to drain dirty water.  They are not designed to remove hair from your household.  You need to be sure that hair is not going down the drain.  Please search your hardware store for a drain cover that will prevent hair from going down the drain.  If you do have a slow drain, you can use a simple and inexpensive mini-snake to remove the hair.  Please ask your local hardware store for assistance.  If you cannot unclog your drain on your own you may need to request a work order and you will be charged for the visit.

Microwave:
1) Never put anything metal in your microwave.

2) Check all plastic items to be sure they are microwavable safe.