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9 Safety Tips for Renters During Coronavirus

The COVID-19 outbreak has spread throughout the world, forcing people everywhere to take precautionary measures and do their part to help end the spread. For people living in apartments, there are specific steps you can take to ensure the safety of yourself as well as your fellow tenants. Take a moment to read how you can do your share in helping your building (and your property manager) protect itself against the virus. 

Take the stairs By now, you have probably heard about the importance of social distancing and have already been proactive in minimizing your contact with others to help survive coronavirus.   The current recommendation is to stand at least 6 feet away from other people in order to reduce your chance of catching the virus, while also lowering the chance of spreading it. In larger apartment complexes, there’s a good chance that elevator access is available to tenants and is often considered the preferred option. However, if you must leave your apartment during self-quarantine, take into account the six feet standard and how taking the stairs can provide a safer alternative. Not only can using the stairs offer a more responsible route, but it can also provide you with much needed extra steps and exercise when you may have additional downtime. Be sure to have sanitizing wipes handy if you plan on using railings and touching shared door handles as well.

Become a resource for your elderly neighbors The older population has been overwhelmingly affected by COVID-19. In fact, 14.8% of people diagnosed with the illness pass away if they fall in the 80 years of age or older category. Due to weakened immune systems, the older population must take extra precautions to protect themselves from contracting the virus. If you are a younger and healthier tenant in an apartment building with elderly neighbors, offering to do their grocery shopping or retrieve their mail can make the difference in saving someone’s life. Make sure to properly sanitize your hands before interacting with your neighbors, and limit gatherings in shared spaces that could potentially infect areas that they will also need access to, such as lobbies or parking garages.

Review your life insurance policy If you live with someone or have had someone co-sign a lease for your apartment, the extra downtime you may have in your apartment can provide an excellent opportunity to review your life insurance plans. Amidst this outbreak, many people have questions about how their coverage will payout in the event of a death due to coronavirus. If you have already secured a policy, rest assured that the death benefit would still be paid out to your loved ones. For those shopping for a life insurance policy during this time, it is imperative that you are honest about recent travel plans and health conditions, as falsehoods can invalidate your coverage. During uncertain economic times such as these, securing a solid plan can provide added peace of mind to apartment-dwellers if you have a significant other who relies on you financially, children that are still paying off student loans, or are planning a major purchase in the near future. Find mentally stimulating activities Just as important as your physical health during times of pandemic, it is also crucial that you make sure to take care of your mental well-being. As it can be challenging to have a change in schedule, more forced time inside, and potential uncertainty of your job or your loved ones’ health, set aside time for activities that will positively stimulate your mind and allow for productive and optimistic thoughts. Take a look at this list of activities that you can do during quarantine that helps relieve stress and keep you from going stir-crazy in your apartment. Furthermore, if the current circumstances have forced you to work remotely, focus on making your space feel as office-like as possible. Set up a desk and stick to a routine to help maintain productivity as well as professionalism.  Collect reliable household cleaning supplies Recent news stories have discussed how everyday cleaning supplies are flying off the shelves—ranging from sanitizing wipes, toilet paper, disinfectant spray, hand soap, and more. For people in apartments, it is especially important to make sure that surfaces in your space are kept well-clean and that you have the proper supplies. Despite item shortages, several household objects destroy the coronavirus (and bonus you probably already have them laying around!) For example, isopropyl alcohol is an effective cleaning solution when mixed with water and left to sit for 30 minutes. Additionally, it can be wise to take advantage of online ordering that can have cleaning supplies sent directly to an apartment without having to leave the safety of your home. Take care of your furry-friend Among some of the disheartening news relating to this pandemic, the World Health Organization has released that there is currently no evidence that COVID-19 can be spread to or from dogs, cats, and other household pets. If you are fortunate enough to live in an apartment building that allows pets, ensure that you have a proper plan in place in the event that someone in your apartment has fallen ill. Making sure that their vaccinations are up to date, extra food is purchased, and you have an emergency contact, or local boarding facility nearby that can watch your pet while you recover can guarantee that you have taken the correct steps to focus on your health and their happiness. Furthermore, when taking your dog for walks, avoid contaminated areas that may have trash or debris around, and opt for a less-populated route to encourage proper social distancing behaviors. 

Practice safer social interactions As mentioned previously, social distancing has put a limit on the types of gatherings that you may normally be used to engaging in on a daily basis. For example, certain apartment complex amenities such as shared gyms or pools may be temporarily shut down in response to health guidelines set in place to prevent the spread of germs. While this may upset your current routine, these changes can help inspire you to find safer ways to socialize with others, all while remaining in quarantine. Luckily, today’s technology allows you to connect with friends or family all over the world in real-time, face-to-face conversations and communication. A fun and risk-free way to stay connected to friends during this time is installing shared apps, such as Netflix Party. This app allows you to watch your favorite Netflix shows with friends simultaneously through synced interactions and can help you feel that you are right next to your friends watching your favorite show. 

Eat nutrient-dense foods With all of this extra time to now spend in your apartment, focusing on your nutrition is a great place to start in combating the coronavirus. Healthy eating can prevent disease as it works to strengthen your immune system, which is needed to ward off illness and fight particular health concerns like obesity and heart disease. Limiting sugars, alcohol intake, and processed food will boost your immunity and help you feel better. This is also a great time to review your current vitamin intake and adjust your meals and eating schedule accordingly to make sure your body is getting the nutrients it needs to stay strong. Likewise, trying out new recipes and spending more time in the kitchen can help make your time feel more rewarding.

Have open and honest communication with your landlord Living in an apartment building presents a unique challenge as many people are living within a shared space. The Center for Disease Control has released a list of protocols to take if you feel sick. If you or someone that lives in your apartment has been suspected or has a confirmed diagnosis of the virus, immediately separate yourself from them and wear a face mask. Contact your doctor ahead of your visit to figure out the next best steps to take for your care and recovery. Furthermore, inform your landlord or property manager so that they can take extra preventative measures in cleaning shared spaces and informing others of the situation. Communicating honestly with the staff members in your building ensures the safety of all tenants and can help reduce the risk of further spreading the virus. Living in an apartment does not stop you from being able to take the correct measures to combat the COVID-19 outbreak, and implementing a few of these practices can help keep your time of social distancing productive and positive.

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