If you have an apartment in Colorado Springs, you probably chose it based on location and amenities. If you’re living in an apartment complex, you’re probably OK.
Apartment complexes are built to standards, and built to last, by companies whose sole purpose is to design, construct, and/or manage those properties in order to make money. They don’t generally skimp, and they don’t generally build them to be unsafe because that would cost them more in the long run.
But Colorado Springs has a strong military presence, as well as a strong student presence. Many of those people are young and transient. They know they’ll only be here for a few years, so it doesn’t make sense to buy a home.
They may be early in their career, so it makes lots of sense to save as much money as possible. These are often the people who think their Colorado Springs apartment is safe, but should think again!
The Dangers Of Apartment Conversions
Many of that second group of people rent apartments that were converted from single-family homes. There is an inherent risk that comes with this if the conversion was poorly completed, and a very substantial risk that comes with apartments that were converted from single-family homes without even getting permit.
There’s a financial risk – whose electric are you really paying for? Are you sure that meter goes to your apartment? The electric company will tell you they’re sure, but the truth is if it’s always been that way they’re not likely to check it out even if your bill is very out of line with your expectations. The same goes for your water and other utilities. Are you not getting all the cable channels you should get?
Converted With Permits – Less Risky
More important is the safety risk. If a home was converted legally with permits into apartments, you still have some risk. Was all of the wiring replaced, or just what was visible? Are the original pipes still there? Is a fifty year old wire with poor insulation laying directly on one of those pipes somewhere behind a wall? Rarely is the structure completely gutted, things are fixed where they can be seen.
If you think your Colorado Springs apartment is safe, you should give serious consideration to how the work was done, as well as when the work was done. If the conversion was done many years ago, codes were less strict and sign-off by an inspector was often less strict, as well. That’s not to say that all apartment conversions are inherently unsafe, but you do need to consider the risks.
Converted Without Permits – Are You Sure It’s Safe?
If the home was converted to apartments without permits, all bets are off. You have no idea if the plans were sufficient, if they tore out an important wall, or if they upgraded anything at all. New drywall does not mean the knob and tube wiring behind it was replaced, for example. Permits are often public record, you may want to make sure that the conversion to apartments went through the proper process.
Many of these risks are things you simply can’t see – they’re hidden behind walls, or they’re things you might not even think of to check. How can you protect your family when you think your Colorado Springs apartment is safe? Renters insurance. You’ll have protection for losses like fire, and even coverage for somewhere else to live after a covered loss. If your budget is tight, you can often get a policy for around fifteen dollars a month. It takes just sixty seconds to get covered! Just call (800)892-4308 or click to get covered - whether you need Colorado Springs renters insurance quotes online or coverage anywhere else!
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Photo Credit: Orin Zebest Class is Closed CC BY 2.0 (Derivative work due to image cropping)