Looking for a place in Oregon? With only a few landlords having been sued due to non-compliance, living there as a renter isn’t a bad idea! Every residential unit in Oregon, regardless of the size, and how high or low the rent is, must meet certain safety standards. This includes health and sanitation so you’re sure you’re safe.
Renting a house or apartment to another person enters you into a legal contract known as a landlord-tenant relationship, so make sure to properly discuss the contract with them and properly inspect the premises first to ensure the place meets the safety standards. I’m sure you don’t want to be like one of the families renting in Oregon who missed work, or who had their children missing school, due to illness caused by health violations, so to help out, below are the residential safety standards of Oregon :
Foundation and Building Structures: The building’s foundation must be able to support the whole building and must be free of rot, crumbling elements and other similar deterioration. This also applies to roofs, chimneys, walls, stairs, and porches.
Handrails and Guardrails: Handrails and must always be in good working condition and must be installed when the stairs are more than three stories. Porches, balconies and other surfaces located 30 inches from the floor must have guardrails installed to avoid accidents.
Waterproof and Weatherproof: Doors and windows must be properly sealed while walls, roofs and floors must be able to keep out wind, snow and rain.
Water Supply: Units should include running hot and cold water, furnished through appropriate fixtures and connected to a sewage disposal system. The plumbing fixture is supposed to be free of cracks and leaks to avoid contamination and should be connected to an approved water system to ensure water is safe to drink.
Heat Sources: The whole unit must have adequate heat sources and a heating system that is properly installed and in good working condition. The heating system should be free of leaks and other obstructions to avoid fire, health and other accidental hazards.
Electrical System and Outlets: The residential buildings’ electrical systems, lights, outlets and other fixtures must be connected to an approved source of electric power so as not to cause hazardous problems to occupants. Tenants on the other hand are supposed to test smoke alarms every six months and are responsible for replacing the batteries, while landlords must provide tenants a written notice containing instructions for testing the smoke alarms.
Windows and Doors: Every room must have at least one window facing an open area like a yard or a court including basements, bathrooms and toilets with ventilation and lighting. Both windows and doors must be easily opened from the inside without a key or special knowledge like passwords or other effort and should have working locks for safety reasons. Lock keys are to be provided by the landlord.
Emergency Exits: In line with the windows, sleeping rooms are required to have windows that are at least 24 inches high and 20 inches wide as emergency escape routes. Both egress doors and windows must be free of obstacles that block the exits for safety precautions.
Sanitation and Cleanliness: The property must have sufficient trash bins, free of holes and covered with water-tight lids, to prevent overflow and be a health and/or fire hazard. Landlords are also required to subscribe and pay for weekly recycling and composting services including garbage removal.
Dampness and Moisture: Every room including basements shall be maintained free from dampness to prevent conditions conducive to decay, mold growth, or deterioration of the structure.
It’s a lot of work and totally draining to check all of these requirements, and to ask the right questions, especially if you’re still looking for the perfect apartment. It’s not a major problem if you don’t mind the hassle but if you’re short on time, or just don’t want to deal with all the technicalities, then it’s time you find a good property manager like Princeton Property Manager to help find your ideal home. They find the best homes in Washington state and Oregon. Why waste time when you can simply type the location you’d like to live in, and browse through homes that have met the safety requirements imposed by law. Try it out!