How to Secure a Rental Property
Being a landlord involves more than merely buying the building and finding a tenant. It falls on your shoulders to offer a safe environment. This means performing regular maintenance and perhaps even installing security systems.
Learn the many benefits of installing security systems in your rental properties and other tips for protecting the space.
If you’re a tenant interested in securing your home, jump ahead in the article for tips for renters. Check out our article, Do I Need a Security System in An Apartment? for additional home security tips.
Using Cameras to Secure a Rental Property as a Landlord
Security cameras in hallways and shared spaces can monitor multi-unit building visitors and tenant interactions
Sadly, neighbors aren’t always neighborly to one another. Apartment dwellers know each others’ daily routines and easily hear if someone is home, making it easier for sticky-fingered renters to steal.
Using security cameras to monitor the hallways may prevent break-ins, leading to tenant happiness and more long-term residents. If theft still happens, it will be easier to identify the culprit so you can take swift action.
Security cameras help protect rental properties from vandalism.
Perhaps a rebellious teen will spray paint the side of your building. A hard-partying tenant may throw-up in the stairway. Someone may leave the front door ajar, jeopardizing everyone else’s safety.
Security cameras would capture all of this and help you take the appropriate steps to protect your property and renters.
Bonus – landlords can write security systems off in their taxes
Because your rental property is a source of taxed revenue, you can write off related expenses. This includes security equipment and professional monitoring costs.
What to look for when choosing a security system as a landlord
A landlord’s needs differ from those of a resident, so you will most likely not need products like motion sensors. However, the following elements will prove helpful:
- Outdoor security cameras – Keep an eye in the sky with cameras positioned at all entrances and outdoor spaces, as well as along the sides of the building. Make sure to choose a model with night vision and facial recognition capabilities.
- Indoor security cameras – Protect your property by placing these in hallways and stairways, but never inside rental units. As with outdoor cameras, choose equipment with night vision and facial recognition features.
- Signage – Security equipment not only responds to trouble, but helps to prevent it in the first place. Help renters feel secure and ward off crime with security system signs. Place them in the front lawn and apply stickers to windows.
- Fire sensors – Theft isn’t the only threat you face when securing your rental property. With multiple families cooking and running appliances throughout the day, landlords should anticipate the potential for fire.
Have mandatory fire alarms throughout the building, but make sure to add sensors. If professionally monitored, these devices will immediately alert a 24/7 monitoring center that will contact the authorities. Help will be on the way ASAP to protect your renters and property from the flames.
- Flood sensors – As with any building, rental properties face possible flooding from frozen pipes, damaged appliances, and human error. Position flood sensors in the basement and shared laundry rooms. You will receive an immediate notification if water levels exceed a minimal height, letting you leap into action to prevent damage.
- Wi-FI extender – Most security equipment requires a strong Wi-Fi connection, which is challenging if you position cameras on multiple floors and outside. Products like the Blue Extender + Chime strengthens your Internet connection to reach all your devices.
- Cloud storage for video – As a landlord, you won’t want to monitor your rental property’s live security footage. You will review it only when incidences arise to find the culprit or settle disputes. Ensure that you have a way to access archived security videos and, if necessary, share them with the police.
Other Ways Landlords Can Help Secure Rental Properties
- Invest in strong door locks that are easy to rekey. Consider putting deadbolts on each of your property unit’s doors to protect renters from someone kicking or slamming their way inside.
Take note, some locks cater specifically to landlords. The cylinder is easy to switch out for a replacement, and you can send the old one back to the company to be rekeyed. This lets you present new tenants with a door lock and the guarantee that only they have the key.
- If your front entrance has a keypad, change the code on a regular basis. There’s no denying the convenience of keypad locks. If someone orders pizza, they can simply give the delivery driver the code so the food can come straight to their door. Is a tenant having a party? They can simply put the code in the invitation rather than running downstairs every time someone new arrives.
It’s easy to see how dozens of non-residents may find out your building’s security code, making tenants vulnerable to theft. If your property’s entrance has a security keypad, regularly change the code to secure renters’ safety.
- Keep the Exterior Well-Lit and Minimize Hiding Spots. Outdoor motion-sensing lights will make tenants feel safer as they walk home at night and fumble for their keys. They also make it harder for intruders to conceal themselves.
Eliminate tall barriers that criminals can use to hide from foot traffic and security cameras, such as trees or tall shrubbery.
- Let renters install security equipment inside their units. Tenants can utilize additional equipment like doorbell cameras, as well as window and door sensors. By securing their personal space, they further protect the whole rental property.
Blue by ADT designs security systems to accommodate smaller homes, and the wireless product design is particularly renter-friendly.
How to Secure a Rental Property as a Tenant
As the person who lives in the space but doesn’t own it, you face unique challenges. Look for a security system you can move from one rental property to next with as little hassle as possible. More specifically, keep the following in mind:
- The majority of equipment should be wireless. When it’s time to move out of your rental property, you’ll need to pack, haul furniture, and transport your belongings to the next home. The last thing you’ll want is to worry about patching holes or deductions from your security deposit.
Spare yourself the headache by opting for wireless cameras and sensors when possible. Companies like Blue by ADT give users the choice between using screws or renter-friendly adhesive strips.
- Owning the equipment may save you money in the long run. For homeowners with large properties, it makes sense to lease a security package with no upfront costs but pay higher monthly monitoring rates. This is because they would otherwise have to bankroll dozens of sensors and cameras, leading to a large bill.
But, as a renter, your property protection needs probably differ. You may only have one exterior door, few windows, and significantly less square footage to monitor. You need less security equipment, so it’s likely cheaper to buy individual components and pay lower monthly monitoring fees.
- Choose a company that doesn’t lock you into a long-term contract. Some companies want customers to commit to multi-year engagements. While this may make sense for some homeowners, it conflicts with tenants’ needs. After all, one upside of renting is the flexibility to move, no strings attached.
Providers like Blue by ADT lets you choose month-to-month whether to use our professional monitoring services. As a renter, you would only for the security protection you need, nothing more.
- DIY security systems like Blue by ADT cater to renters. You don’t have to hunt high-and-low for renter-friendly security systems to protect your property and family.
Blue by ADT caters to your needs with specially designed equipment. Rather than making you buy a package too large for your space, BYO security systems let you purchase only the components you need. Plus, as you move from one rental property to another, you can add on more security products to help protect your new space.
Not sure if you want a comprehensive security solution? Blue makes it possible to buy individual products you self-monitor, such as our popular doorbell camera.
Blue by ADT Helps Both Renters and Landlords
Blue by ADT designs security systems to be versatile. Whether you’re a landlord wanting to secure your property or a tenant seeking easy-to-install equipment, our broad range of products will meet your needs. Explore our DIY alarm systems or security cameras to find practical property protection solutions backed by ADT’s expertise.