As a landlord, it’s your responsibility to provide a secure property for your tenants. No one wants to receive a call from a distressed renter who’s just been broken into. Safe and secure properties equal happy tenants.
Insufficient security against intruders is one of the most common hazards impacting well-being in the home. Burglaries and forced entry are not only alarming, but also result in a lot of hassle sorting out insurance claims.
So, how safe and secure is your property?
If you think there could be room for improvement, then read on.
Are the Locks Up to Scratch?
The first thing to think about when assessing the security of your property should be the standard of door locks in place.
Changing Locks Between Tenancies
It should be common practice to change all the locks on doors and windows for every change in occupancy. You never know who’s hands the keys of previous tenants can end up in, especially when getting new keys cut is so easy.
What Type of Lock to Choose?
The Residential Landlords Association advise using five lever mortice locks for external timber doors or a multi-point locking system for PVC doors.
It’s also worth fitting door chains onto front doors for added security.
Don’t Forget About Windows
Window locks are just as important as they are a common point of entry for intruders.
Ensure that all windows easily accessible from the outside have good quality locks. But note that locks should not be used for designated escape windows.
Are the Doors a Good Fit?
It’s all well and good having top-quality locks, but if external doors don’t fit the door frame properly your property is vulnerable to break ins.
Make sure that all exterior doors and garage doors are correctly fitted and are free from damage.
What About an Alarm System?
Fitting a security alarm is another way of keeping your property safe for your tenants. Raising the alarm is especially important if the occupants are away from the property for extended periods of time.
The security system doesn’t have to be state-of-the-art. A simple home security system is all you need to protect your property. There is a huge array of burglar alarms and defender alarms out there:
- The simplest option is a ‘bells-only’ alarm which, when triggered, sets off an audible alarm to alert tenants or neighbours
- A speed dialler alarm allows you to choose up to three contact numbers to be immediately contacted by text message when the alarm is set off
- The most expensive alarm is a monitored system. When the alarm is sounded, a signal is sent to a remote monitoring centre. This means the centre can confirm whether there is a security issue, and if so, inform the police, freeing up more of your time
Is Your Property Visible?
If your property is located slightly off the beaten track or in an area without many neighbours around, it might be worth investing in a security camera.
CCTV systems are more affordable than they used to be, but make sure you comply with laws on the handling of digital images.
Is Your Property Well Lit?
A simple, yet effective security measure is to fit security lights. Outdoor lighting is essential for making your tenants feel safe when they return to the property late at night.
Important places to illuminate with sensor activated lights include the property entrance, gates, driveways and anywhere that could be a potential entry point for intruders.
It’s also worth fitting wall switch controlled lights near garden outbuildings, side and rear doors. Anywhere not overlooked by neighbours could benefit from additional lighting.
How Safe is the Area?
The location of your property can have a big impact on the risk of break ins. Ensure you research the area thoroughly before making the decision to buy new properties.
This type of research can take time. Time that busy landlords with multiple properties might not have to spare. Luckily, there are several property report services available to do the hard work for you. These reports look at factors such as historical crime data in the area as well as comparing local and national crime rates. They can also give you information on the nearest police stations to make property management simpler.
Do you Have a Vacant Property?
It’s important to keep tabs on any vacant properties you might have. Most insurance companies require vacant properties to be visited regularly to check the property is secure and manage any issues.
If you’re juggling multiple properties, why not delegate this task to a professional service? No Letting Go offers reliable vacant tenancy inspections so you don’t have to worry about any attempted break-ins.
Are Your Tenants Safety Aware?
It could be worth sending your tenants a quick email with advice to ensure they’re up to date with the latest safety information. If you’re renting to students or younger people this could be particularly beneficial.
It’s a nice way to show you care and are serious about your responsibilities as a landlord. Simple home security ideas and tips such as hiding valuables and leaving a light on in the bathroom when out could make all the difference.
Direct your tenants to the Met Police website for further home security information.
Secure Property Management
Hopefully, these security ideas will help you to provide the safest and securest properties for your tenants.
If you’ve already got a lot on your plate, let us help with our professional, unbiased inventory services and property reports. With No Letting Go’s assistance, you can rest assured your property meets all the safety standards.