Several months ago, we created a post sharing some valuable Security Advice for Renters. In that post, we shared how renters can use different approaches to add non-intrusive security to their rental properties. This week, we share some security tips for those on the other side of the “renter/rentee” transaction. Here, we will share tips for landlords to add rental property security. Securing rental properties carries a unique set of challenges. Therefore, we’ll spend some time looking at several different types of security.
We will begin by discussing the importance of installing high-security locks and re-keying them frequently if needed. From there, we will look at a couple ways to add lighting-related security to rental properties. We will also look at how installing cameras can add security in more ways than one. Then, we will share some alarm design tips to help monitor your properties against a break-in. Finally, we will examine how you can use your own presence and proactive actions to keep burglars away. Now, let’s get started with a look at how increasing lock security increases overall rental property security.
Create a Strong First Line of Defense
In many ways, locks provide a “first line” of defense against break-ins. Unfortunately, thieves often have no trouble getting through low-grade residential locks. Earlier this year, we created a post sharing How Professional Locksmith Services Help Homeowners. In that post, we shed some light on how greatly the quality of common locks can vary. Many customers find themselves surprised to learn that most household locks fit the lowest industry standards. Of course, we do not recommend installing these locks.
Instead, consider installing high-quality locks. For example, Medeco, our preferred lock manufacturer, makes locks that burglars cannot easily pick. Moreover, these locks provide additional security against blunt-force attacks. Rental properties often go empty for long periods of time. This means that spending the money to install hard-to-solve locks can go a long way towards adding overall rental property security. Now, let’s look at another security tip designed to keep vacant properties as secure as possible.
Do Not Leave Your Property in the Dark
As you might guess, burglars like to work under the cover of darkness whenever possible. When securing rental homes, keeping your property well-lit gets even more important. After all, burglars breaking into occupied homes face the prospect of getting caught outside or inside the property. However, rental properties often stay empty between tenants, as we discussed earlier. This means that you should eliminate any “hiding spots” on your properties. Installing extensive outdoor lighting goes a long way towards hitting this goal.
Additionally, make sure to choose your landscaping designs carefully. Uncut shrubbery and high wooden fences allows burglars to stay out of sight until they find it safe to make a move to get inside a house. If possible, keep every area of your property’s yard visible from the street. This makes your rental properties a less attractive target at all times, even in between tenants. Next, we’ll take a look at how surveillance cameras provide a double-edged attack against crime.
Install Cameras to Keep Eyes on Your Property
Since landlords only spend a limited amount of time at their rental properties, installing surveillance cameras can prove especially useful. After all, landlords can use cameras to monitor properties for crime and keep an eye on the actions of their tenants as well. Of course, we certainly do not recommend installing cameras in intrusive locations. However, installing surveillance that provides a good view of their property can help landlords determine what caused damage to a home if anything does occur. We install cameras that users can view live remotely in real time, even from offsite! Moreover, we install recorders to capture and store video for future viewing.
Furthermore, cameras add a great proactive threat to potential criminals. Individuals approaching your home with ill intentions and seeing cameras will likely choose another target. Tenants who value security will also appreciate the addition of cameras on any rental property. Surveillance proves especially useful in multi-family properties where one tenant is engaged in damaging or off-limits behavior. In these cases, security cameras help catch those responsible and save innocent parties from suspicion. As you can see, home surveillance goes a long way towards adding rental property security! At this point, let’s focus on another piece of security equipment that we install and service.
Design a Comprehensive Alarm System
Our post on Smart Security System Design shares some of the many choices alarm customers have when designing a security system. Many customers choose the most “efficient” alarm design possible. For example, using a few motion detectors rather than several window sensors can help save a little money on the alarm install. Furthermore, many customers forego installing sensors such as glass break detectors and shock sensors. Unfortunately, skipping out on this security can lead to issues down the road. Of course, this danger only increases when applied to empty rental properties.
We recommend that landlords take a comprehensive approach to their security system. This can help catch criminals at the point of entry, rather than allowing them to wander a home for a time before getting “caught” by the alarm. The sooner the alarm siren sounds during an attempted break-in, the greater the chance the thief escapes before getting inside the home. Likewise, the sooner the alarm goes off, the sooner our central station dispatches the authorities. We find the additional security this tip provides well worth the investment. At this point, we have one tip left to help you with rental property security! Now, let’s see how providing a frequent human presence can go a long way towards achieving this goal.
Provide a Presence at Your Property
One of the easiest ways to make your rental properties more secure is to stop by every now and then. When you do have tenants, you obviously do not want to frequently knock on the door unannounced. However, meeting with contractors when you are setting up work at your properties and stopping in occasionally can make it known to tenants that you are not an “absentee” landlord. Additionally, continuing this behavior in between tenants can also let anyone scoping out the house know that you could stop by at any time. Make sure to stop often enough to pick up any junk mail and complete basic yard maintenance. Doing so goes a long way towards making your home a less obvious target for passersby. Overall, the combination of installing the right security equipment and occasionally dropping in on your properties can greatly increase rental property security.
Putting it All Together for Complete Rental Property Security
We hope that this post has provided you with some useful information! Furthermore, we hope you will contact us with any related questions you may have. We can help you follow through with many of the tips that we’ve outlined in this post. As an added bonus, we provide free site surveys for both new and existing customers alike. During our visit, we can address any security concerns you may have. Additionally, we can make our own suggestions based on our observations of your property. Together, we can create a plan to keep your rental properties, and the tenants inside of them, as safe and secure as possible!