If you own rental properties in the northern portion of the country you will get calls from tenants about heat. Here are the most standard lines:
“I have a baby and my house is cold.”
“My children are sick and my house is cold.”
“It’s beginning to get cold and I need my heat turned on.”
“My baby and me are both sick and my mother just came home from the hospital and my house is cold.”
I have these calls begin in August. They continue every month through December.
Two main points to consider: “Cold” is a very subjective term. What is cold to you may not be cold to me. There are government guidelines to heat. Make your tenant give you a real temperature reading. 85 degrees is not “legally” cold although I have had tenants swear that it is!
2nd- remember that your rental units are NOT your house. Just because your new house is insulated and warm doesn’t mean that your old brick uninsulated house in the city isn’t. Again, get a temperature reading from the tenant. If they can’t get a decent thermometer, supply one for them. It will save a lot of headaches.