Thanks to the overabundance of lawyers, the days of verbal agreements meaning anything are all but gone. So instructions you give a new tenant on what they should do if they have a problem must be in writing. Otherwise if you end up in court, you could be out of luck.
I suggest putting together a one-inch thick binder — a Tenant Handbook. I say a binder rather than a pile of papers stapled together, because then it is more likely to stay in the open, such as on the kitchen counter with cookbooks. You might want to put the lease in this binder, too.
Among the items you should include:
What to do if the toilet overflows? Turn off the water at the base of the toilet. Show them how to use a plunger.
What to do if the water supply to the washer springs a leak? Turn it off.
How to turn off the water supply to the house.
What to do if a circuit breaker trips? Breakers trip for a reason. Don’t turn it back on.
You might think that someone with average intelligence would know how to shut off water pouring out from under a kitchen sink. But believe me, some people just don’t. Or just don’t care. And guess who gets stuck paying to clean up the mess.