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November 26,2020 / By Stephen Osomba
Christmas in A Pandemic: 5 Tips For Tenants This Festive Season

The festive season is finally upon us. With all that has happened this year, it is somewhat a miracle that we’ve made it this far. However, even as we plan for the celebration with family and friends, this year’s Christmas is bound to be markedly different. While many are proceeding with their plans, there are clouds of uncertainties on whether we will get to have meaningful holistic festivities. This is largely due to the increasing infection rates. As a result, the anticipated containment measures to be taken could curtail enjoyment. The government, for instance, could bar those in the city from travelling to the countryside to reunite with their families after hiatus. Regardless, we ought to find joy in a situation that seems bleak. Already, the vaccine trials are showing promising signs and this should give us hope.

Indeed, this year’s festive season is a first on many fronts: Christmas celebration in a pandemic. It sounds like a scene from a horror movie but it is a reality. For the first time, we will have to practice social distancing in our house parties and avoid warm embraces from friends and family. Nevertheless, how can you get everything going smoothly this festive season despite what’s happening around us? Here are our top five tips to help you have a great Christmas and welcome the New Year jubilantly.

1. Pay your January 2021 rent in advance
The festive season brings lots of joy and feel-good moments. With these high levels of excitement, it’s usually quite easy to get carried away and overindulge in fun. In the process, you infringe on critical household funds like allocation for rent expenses. It is therefore important to understand oneself. This means knowing your weaknesses and strengths as far as financial management is concerned. Perhaps you are fully able to exercise fidelity. Even so, self-discipline is not a universal virtue and to err is human. However, to be safe, pay your rent in advance depending on the arrangement you have with your landlord especially if you have a tenancy lease with monthly payment terms.

2. Close the taps before travelling
Usually when the festive season checks-in, many travel upcountry to spend time with their family. It has become some sort of a cultural norm although this year things may turn out differently given the prevailing pandemic. However, if you decide to travel, remember and ensure that you turn off all taps in your house. This is a major worry especially for those leaving in studio apartments (commonly referred to as Bedsitter) where your entire space could quickly turn into a mini pool. For that reason, don’t disturb your enjoyment by getting worried about whether you closed the taps in your home lest it gets flooded.

3. Make sure you lock the door and secure priced household items
Closely related to the above, you also need to make sure that you have locked the door of your house before embarking on your holiday trip. Double-check that the lock is in place to avoid being stressed as you have fun with friends and family. Equally important, provide extra security for your prized items. You can keep things like jewels in a safe or lock expensive electronics in a much secure storeroom.

4. Inform the property manager of your holiday travel
Living in the city can be a daunting task. With job losses and a depressed economy, cases of insecurity have been on the rise for the past few months particularly burglary. Recently on the news, residents in an apartment complex in Utawala, Nairobi woke up to find their prized household items carted away. None of the residents heard anything and it is suspected that they were induced to sleep by the thieves. Indeed, such cases can cause worries especially if you are planning to travel for holiday in a distant place. Therefore, before you travel, make sure that you inform the property manager or a trusted neighbour who has remained behind to watch out for suspicious characters.

5. Set party rules
Everyone loves a Christmas house party. Well, everyone except the uninvited neighbours. If you plan to hold a festive party, inform them and to keep the music to a reasonable level. The last thing you want is to be visited by the police because you are causing a nuisance by partying loud, late and contravening the COVID-19 containment rules. Be careful not to spend your festive holiday in the police cells.

Well, if you follow these tips, you should be alright and will most likely have peace of mind as you enjoy yourself. Remember to give something to the less fortunate and send your friends and family a festive card accompanied maybe with an appropriate gift. Ruth Carter Stapleton once said, “Christmas is most truly Christmas when we celebrate it by giving the light of love to those who need it most.”

May you have a spectacular Christmas!

AUTHOR'S NOTE:
The views expressed here are of the author and do not necessarily represent the position of Square Foot Real Estate and as such does not warranty any particulars.