If you’ve followed our blog at all, you know that we frown upon taking a “one-size-fits-all” approach to creating security for any property. We believe in working through each and every application to create the most effective security possible. Additionally, we also want to create the user experience that each and every customer prefers. In this post, we share how we reach these goals when assisting with creating rental property security. Securing this type of application requires extra planning and thought.

First, we’ll explain the unique difficulties of creating security in rental homes. From there, we’ll address specific types of security products and how to approach their installation and usage. Specifically, we’ll begin with an overview of creating effective lock hardware security. From there, we’ll move on to the benefits of installing surveillance cameras. Then, we’ll focus on effective security system design. Installing alarms has long remained one of our most popular and effective forms of creating security for any property. Now, let’s dive in with a look at the unique security challenges created by rental properties.

What Makes Creating Rental Property Security Unique?

Creating rental property security presents a few obstacles when designing and implementing security plans. For starters, these properties can stay vacant for various amounts of time. Therefore, we must maintain a high level of security at all times. After all, thieves scout their victims’ homes out before attempting a break-in. Surely, they will recognize when a property remains empty for a significant period of time. This means that you should design your security with the knowledge that your rental properties may have a target on them.

Additionally, you must also design your security measures with the knowledge that they will serve multiple families. Therefore, consider installing easy-to-learn and highly-adaptable security equipment. While this may sound daunting, we have several suggestions throughout this post to make it work for you! Taking these precautions now will save you from having to replace existing security equipment when your homes get new tenants. Let’s move on by taking a look at how to addres lock-related rental property security.

A Medeco Grade 1 deadbolt

High-Quality deadbolts, such as this model by Medeco, can withstand much greater abuse than lower-grade locks that burglars breach on a regular basis.

Addressing Lock Security Issues

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. Quite a while back, 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 at any point in time. However, the stakes get even higher when choosing locks for properties that will stay vacant for some time. Installing high-quality locks can go a long way towards achieving rental property security. For example, Medeco, our preferred lock manufacturer, makes locks that provide tremendous security against both picking and blunt force attacks.

We also have a couple ways that we can help you create key control for your rental homes. For starters, Medeco locks come with a key-control system. This means that nobody else can make copies of your keys. In turn, as long as you receive your keys back when tenants leave, you know for sure that they have not created extra keys to come back uninvited later on. Additionally, we also recommend that you have us re-key your property periodically. This process takes older keys out of the equation entirely. Next up, let’s look at the valuable roles that cameras can play in securing your rental property.

Putting “Eyes” on Your Property at All Times

Since you can only spend a limited amount of time at your rental properties, installing surveillance cameras can prove especially useful. Doing so provides multiple layers of security. First and foremost, you can use cameras to monitor properties for crime. Furthermore, installing surveillance allows you to monitor how well your tenants care for your homes 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.

Additionally, 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! Now, let’s shift our focus to creating rental property through the use of a security system.

A QOLSYS IQ Panel 4 Alarm System

The QOLSYS IQ Panel 4 has an easy-to-use touchscreen interface that makes it easy to operate and program.

Designing an Effective 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 window 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.

As a landlord, we recommend that you take a more comprehensive approach to system design. This can help catch criminals at the point of entry, rather than allowing them to explore your hosue before getting “caught” by the alarm. The sooner the alarm siren sounds during an attempted break-in, the greater the chance the thief retreats 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.

Additionally, our preferred alarm system, the QOLSYS IQ Panel 4, provides an extremely intuitive touchscreen interface. This makes it easy to complete tasks such as changing user codes or system settings. As we mentioned earlier, rental properties can go through many tenants. Therefore, creating an easy and customizable alarm experience goes a long way in effectively securing these homes!

Putting it All Together

We hope that this post assists you in your plans for creating rental property security. As you can see, this type of application requires some special consideration. Therefore, if you have any questions about the material presented here, we encourage you to contact us and share your thoughts. We will happily answer any and all of your security-related inquiries. Furthermore, we also encourage you to take advantage of our free site survey program. We offer complimentary security audits and equipment quotes to both new and existing customers alike.

Perhaps you have an existing security plan in place, but want to take advantage of some of the advice doled out in this post. Or, maybe you have very little in the way of security now, and want help dsigning a complete plan from the ground up. Either way, we are happy to help! We’ve worked with hundreds of customers over our 34 years in business to secure their properties, including rental homes. Together, we can create a complete security plan to keep your property — and everyone on it — as safe and secure as possible!