As a landlord, the ideal world would be to have properties in perfect neighborhoods, and areas that are void of any security problems, populated with the perfect people. Since this is not the case , it is wise to have plans in place to protect your property and tenants. It is important to communicate with your tenants these best security practices.
There are very simple solutions for property security. Even the smallest deterrent may cause an intruder to change his mind about breaking in.
Quick and Free Tricks
Close and lock windows
Lock Doors (deadbolt and knob)
Close/lock gates around yard
If possible lock up bikes, and keep out of plain sight.
Close curtains at night (don’t provide a free survey for the eyes of a greedy thief)
Leave porch light on at night
Keep hedges trimmed to decrease hiding spots
Low Cost Security Tools:
-Fake alarm signs and stickers is an effective security tool, believe it or not. Amazon is a great place to purchase these.
-Add deadbolt to your doors – DYI! See instructions here on how to install a deadbolt yourself
-Invest in window securing mechanisms for less than $20, which will detect window movement and vibrations. Follow this link to purchase.
Older houses and the Balance Game
With older property, air conditioning may not be built into units. Tenants will open windows in the summer for airflow, and even doors. This is okay when tenants are home, but landlords should encourage tenants to be vigilant about closing and locking windows when exiting the property.
It may behoove you to provide fans for your tenants before they move in. This will provide needed airflow, without opening windows, particularly at night when it is vital to keep the house secure. Check out this article, with tips and tricks on keeping the house more “airtight”.
Extra Padding of Security
Renter’s insurance is a small price to pay for security of mind. Renters insurance typically costs a fraction of what other insurances cost. You’ll usually be covered in case of home burglaries, water damage, vandalism, and fire damage. Some types even cover injuries that occur on your property.
It’s never a bad idea to get to know your neighbors. You don’t need to be best friends with them, but it is helpful to have a friendly face nearby. An extra set of eyes on your house when you’re away makes all the difference, and you never know when you might need an egg!