The Presidential Iowa “straw poll” is months away; however the Texas GOP primary tomorrow brings up the issue of election signs on rented properties and the effects for property manager and property owners are subtle but important.
Property Managers need to be vigilant in making sure that election activities are handled in a responsible manner on properties under their management.
If your rental resident is planning on having an election activity at their (your property owner’s property), then some stipulations need to be established.
Your resident needs to have insurance coverage for any kind of “gathering” of people and the property owner and agent should be named as additional insureds by the insurance carrier. The coverage should be specific to the planned event and provide both premises and liability coverage.
For any large gathering, the resident should be sure to notify adjacent property residents of the planned activity and make sure that there are no parking, congestion or noise concerns from neighbors.
Your residents may limit their political support to posting yard signs or placing placards in the windows. If this is the case, you need to make sure that residents know that yard signs should be placed in such as way so as not to obstruct the ingress and egress from the property; interfere with the maintenance of the yard or laws; and not cause a traffic hazard at corners or driveway entries.
For window placards, they should be placed loosely in the window, not taped to the inside of the glass. They should allow airflow so that moisture does not accumulate between the placard and glass to cause damage to the sill and window trim.
If the rental unit is in a condo homeowner association or subdivision with restrictions, these rules should be considered and observed by the resident.
Lastly, once the election has been held, the signs, placards, etc. should come down immediately - whether by the rental resident or staff of the candidate. They should not remain on the property after the election and their removal should be the responsibility of the rental resident.
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM * GIBSON MANAGEMENT GROUP, Ltd.
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