We have all read the tragic stories of deaths and injuries involving people and animals and water (e.g. drownings, flooding, toxic algae/bacteria, snake/alligator attacks, waterborne diseases, mosquito bites/illnesses, smells, unsightly pond scum).

There are many high tech risk management tools now such as alarms in/around the water and on doors/windows/gates that access the water.

Remember that water and electricity are not always a good mix so ensure all equipment is safe and periodically inspected and has proper manual/automatic shutoff/breaker equipment.

Old fashioned fencing and warning signs are good risk management as well.

Inspections and testing and treatment of water and dams helps prevent flooding and algae which can cause health issues. Parasites, mosquitoes, bacteria, temperature, elements, and chemicals can be issues to risk manage. Warning signs can include: Don’t drink the water. Don’t eat the fish/animals.

Proper insurance is another risk management strategy.

Draining the water hazard can also be a way to manage risks. Moving water retention ponds into underground systems is an option. Minimizing drain hazards is a risk management strategy.

With tenants, the landlord can hire a law firm to draft a hold harmless and indemnification agreement for tenants to sign. Fair housing prohibits discrimination in advertising and leasing based on familial status and disability. Having safety and disability equipment near the water is a risk management strategy.

Removing/preventing/controlling people and animals from accessing the water is a risk management strategy. Surveillance and safety equipment are risk management strategies.

Good risk management: always require a seller disclosure as part of your SCR lisiting agreement for all real estate deals because of the statutory and case law risk management benefits. SC seller disclosure has questions that are even applicable to raw land deals and new construction and commercial deals.

Posted by: Byron King on 10/04/19 (This information is only accurate as of 10/04/19. You must contact SCR for updates and changes to this information after 10/04/19 as laws and regulations may change over time. SCR 803-772-5206 or email info at screaltors.org)