Protecting Your Property: 5 Tips to Keep Your Rental Property Safe
As a respectable property owner, you need to make sure that you have taken all the precautions so that your tenants, their belonging and your property are all safe. Being uncaring in this regard will result in your and your property’s reputation being smeared so don’t be surprised by less reliable short-term tenants.
If reputable tenants won’t rent your place, that means you would also have to lower the rent and not to mention that those who rent for a shorter period of time usually aren’t that attentive towards your belongings. To avoid such complications, here are a few pieces of advice on how to ensure your rental’s safety.
Burglar-proof entry points
Starting from the exterior of your property, windows and doors are the crucial points you need to take care of. If there is an overgrown bush left unattended, it could be the perfect climbing place for a burglar to access your windows. Keeping the trees and bushes orderly trimmed won’t only make the place look more appealing but would make it more difficult for thieves to climb into the house. As for your old door, they are not just an insulation problem which has a negative effect on your electricity bill but they provide an easy point of entrance for uninvited guests. Being old, they are more fragile and easier to pick or break so you might consider investing in quality front doors made of metal or solid wood. And for their own safety, don’t forget to urge the tenants to double-check the windows and doors before they leave the house.
Add more light
Burglars usually choose to break in when they know no one is at home and most commonly at night because they are counting that the cover of night would hide their activities. Adding extra light to illuminate the front and the back of your property will definitely send a message that it wouldn’t be possible for them to hide that easily. Another practical safety feature to consider is external motion sensor lights because they save electricity but not being on constantly and they will make any burglar double-think attempting to go near the house. If your tenants are at home, the lights turning on will make them alert and they will check around the house throughout the evening. In case they aren’t at home, chances are that any thief will not risk being caught especially not knowing whether there is something worth stealing.
Take out an insurance policy
Although people most often think of thieves as the only threat to their security, that isn’t the case. Your property and belongings might be put to danger by floods, fire, earthquake and other elements you don’t have control of. Ensuring help in the case of such unfortunate events will give both you and your tenants peace of mind. Besides covering for loss after the insured event, if you take out a home and contents insurance, you may also count on the removal of debris and temporary accommodation for a certain period. Counseling can be also arranged for your tenants after a traumatic event so a comprehensive insurance policy protecting your property and belongings can be helpful in even more ways.
Be mindful where you keep valuables
Try to get into a mind of a thief for a minute: you want to go in, grab valuable items and get out as quickly and quietly as you can. This means that you won’t be stealing any 60-inch plasma TVs since they are bulky, easy to break and you will look more conspicuous carrying them to your car or a van. This is why you would be going for smaller valuable items which are in plain sight. So, you need to warn your tenants not to leave their valuable belongings such as expensive jewelry, watches and cash laying everywhere, especially in plain sight close to front doors. In case of a break-in, a thief will most likely be in a hurry so keeping portable valuables in a faraway corner of the house might be the best solution for making it complicated to find and steal them.
Break the routine
People are creatures of habit and we love our routines since they often provide us with confidence and comfort. But going for a run each morning at the same time and leaving the house empty will be noted by any thief. Breaking in without staking out the property and the routine of tenants is very risky, so they can expect to be observed and scrutinized. Advise your tenants to bring some spontaneity into their daily lives and change the time they leave and return from work, when they go to bed or take their dog for a walk so as to confuse any criminals observing.
Keeping your rental safe has to be a mutual collaboration among you and your tenants – you need to provide all the support that you can and they need to act responsibly towards your property and belongings.