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10 Ways To Secure Your Rental Property

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  • 10 Ways To Secure Your Rental Property

    10 Ways To Secure Your Rental Property
    Kiwi Property Investor

    Burglaries often damage the structure and interiors of properties when they occur. Therefore it makes sense to improve security - not only for your tenants' sakes, but for the sake of the property.

    1. Alarm
    Security alarms will cost from $500 to $1500 to install. Tenants who are seeking additional protection will pay slightly more than the market average rents for the benefits offered by a security alarm.

    2. Monitoring
    For areas in which crime rates are high and if it is difficult to find tenants, you can improve your chances of locating quality tenants by having your alarm monitored which costs $25 - $35 per month.

    Rent can be increased by $5 per week to cover the costs of monitoring, giving the tenant the peace of mind that the security company will contact them, or the landlord, on a specified contact number if the alarm is activated.

    3. Alarm response
    Having alarms responded to by an experienced licensed security officer costs from $25 to $40 per callout. Make sure if you have this service that you receive warning decals (stickers) to place on your property's windows.

    These will act as a deterrent to warn potential intruders that the house is monitored and a licensed security officer will arrive if there is a break-in. This level of security is a must for commercial property, and should be considered for apartment buildings and properties in high crime rate areas.

    The payment of call-outs can be incorporated into the body corporate or agreed on before the tenant signs the tenancy agreement. Make sure you have the agreement for payment of a call-out in writing and signed by the tenant.

    4. Smoke alarm
    Although this is not part of protecting your property from burglars, tenants can accidentally leave a stovetop on, or a candle lit, and cause a fire. Smoke alarms may prevent massive damage and will ensure that your tenants have evacuated safely in the event of a fire. Smoke alarms can also be connected through your monitoring company should you choose to have an alarm that is monitored.

    5. Window locks
    You need to ensure that you speak to the locksmith to ensure the right locks are fitted to your property. Aluminium windows require a different lock to wooden windows and if the wrong type is fitted, they will not lock properly.

    You can ask the locksmith to 'key' all of the locks before they are fitted this way you will need to give only one key to the tenant to open all of the locks and make sure to ensure you keep a copy yourself in case they lose their key.

    This will also prevent the tenant from leaving the keys in the window locks (as anyone breaking in can just smash the window and turn the key.)

    6. Deadbolts
    Deadbolts are common place for most houses nowadays, and are essential for ranch sliders which can easily be broken into by 'bouncing' the door off its rails.

    It is recommended that you do not use double cylinder deadlocks in the main entrance-ways to the property as they require two keys (one for each side) and in an emergency such as a fire this could prevent your tenants being able to leave the property safely.

    7. Security lights
    Sensor lights are becoming more popular for gardens and the main entrance-way to properties. These not only give the tenant a safer exit and entrance to the property in the dark, but can also act as deterrents to potential burglars.

    Sensor lights should be put outside any entrances to the property and the garages or sheds.

    8. Padlocks for sheds and locking mechanisms on garages
    Petty theft, which often includes graffiti, is common on the outside of buildings, where there are no locks and the buildings are not lit at night.

    Using padlocks and a locking roller door or flip padlock, to secure the garage will prevent this level of crime. Security lighting on the exterior of these buildings will also deter the graffiti.

    9. Remove louvered windows
    Louvered windows do not seal, are relatively easy to remove quietly and will allow easy entry for a break-in expert. These windows are usually in older properties and service bathrooms and laundries.

    They can also be a potential source of draft in the house in winter. Replacing these windows with standard windows will add greater protection to your property.

    10. Neighbours
    Some property owners love their neighbours and some hate them. If you are securing a rental property, and if the neighbours know who you are and have a contact phone number for you at all times, they can let you know if they see something untoward occurring to your property when the tenants are out. Many burglaries happen in daylight, and if your neighbours do not work, they will keep an eye on your property. A small Christmas gift does not go astray to keep them onside each year!

    News source:
    "There's one way to find out if a man is honest-ask him. If he says 'yes,' you know he is a crook." Groucho Marx