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Rental Property Security

10 Tips on How To Secure a Rental Property

You’ve probably heard of the latest travel trend and may have tried it out. Vacation rentals and home exchanges – through platforms like Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway, and GuestToGuest – have revolutionized travel, and it looks like this trend is here to stay.

It was a bit slow to catch on, but now people worldwide rent houses, apartments, even single bedrooms, and air mattresses directly from property owners. This trend is now considered a competitive market.

Likewise, regular people are hosting perfect strangers in exchange for short-term rental fees or reciprocal accommodations. For some, hosting has even developed from being a second source of income to a full-time job.

However, security is one of the biggest challenges for anyone managing a vacation or short-term rental property. What steps can you take to increase security on your rental property?

Key Takeaways

  1. Ensuring the security of your rental property strengthens the likelihood of a good relationship with your tenants.
  2. You are more likely to do business if your rental properties are secured.
  3. Great Valley Lockshop can perform comprehensive assessments and cover your security needs.

How to Protect Your Rental Property? 8 Easy Tips

Protecting your rental unit will not only benefit you. It is also beneficial for your renters. In fact, knowing that you prioritize safety can attract a prospective tenant more. This can also improve your relationship with quality tenants.

If you are a property manager or owner, use our 10-point checklist to improve your security system for your rental properties.

how to protect your rental property

1. Extra Lock Security

Minimally, there are a few basics that every property should have, regardless of whether it’s a rental or owned property. Start  installing heavy-duty strike plates and deadbolt locks on all entry doors with at least a 1-inch bolt.

For more advanced security systems, you can use smart locks to add a layer of protection. Nowadays, smart locks are more popular as they are harder to bypass.

2. Exterior Property Maintenance

Make your rental property look lived in by keeping up with regular yard maintenance. Cutting the grass, raking leaves, and shoveling snow are all part of regular upkeep. If you don’t have the time or live far away, hire help to maintain the property.

Consider installing lights around the exterior of the house or apartment. The front door should be well-lit for renters arriving after dark. Plus, lights with motion sensors can help deter break-ins, especially when installed on the back and sides of a rental property.

3. Locks for Windows & Sliding Doors

In addition to the standard locks on residential windows, you may want to install high-security window locks on a rental property. These can be installed on first-floor windows and any situated over a balcony or exterior stairway.

Similarly, sliding glass doors can be an easy point of entry for burglars in a vacation rental property. By installing special double bolt locks or security bars, you can increase security during periods when the place sits empty.

4. Stop the Mail

This detail is often overlooked, but it’s an important step to prevent identity theft. If you occasionally rent out your primary residence, be sure to stop your mail during those periods. Take a few minutes to put a temporary stop on the mail through the post office.

5. Upgrade to Smart Locks

Smart locks offer a lot of solutions for anyone managing short-term or vacation rental properties. They enable remote management features, which allow homeowners to control who can and cannot access the rental property while they’re away.

With smart locks, you don’t need to meet guests when they check in or check out. You can set access times for the duration of your guest’s stay. Then, when the renter checks out, cancel their access permission. The smartphone app shows timestamps for when a renter has accessed the lock to the property—no more need to manage extra copies of the keys or change the locks when they go missing.

Another neat benefit is that you can use it to remotely grant access for deliveries or service technicians while you’re away. Instead of driving to the property to let the cleaning service staff in or open the door for the plumber, change the setting on the smart lock application.

6. Provide a Safe

It makes a lot of sense to provide guests and renters with a safe for valuable items. The safe should be installed by fixing it to the floor or into a wall so it’s not easily removed if a break-in occurs.

Ensure that your safe can only be accessed using the code you input and brief renters on how to use it.

7. Install an Alarm System

Protect your rental property and your guests by installing a monitored security system. Unprofessional security cameras can invade your guests’ privacy, but a professionally installed system can be effective as a security measure. Look into using any door-stop alarm or window alarm for your rental home.

Plus, most security systems today can be integrated with your smart lock for extra convenience and protection. More advanced security systems offer real-time surveillance of your property. This will help you monitor and detect any suspicious movements.

8. Use Online Rental Platforms with Caution

Private vacation rentals and home exchanges can be a fun and more personal way to travel, but property owners should practice caution when relying on online platforms for property management. For example, it’s great to post lots of pictures of your rental place, but people using the website shouldn’t be able to identify your house from them.

Be careful not to show too many details of the exterior or the exact address. These details aren’t necessary for potential guests and could pose a security risk.

Most web-based vacation rental platforms provide handy tools for hosts as well. Take advantage of the possibility to check the profile of users booking the property. Read reviews written by other hosts and exchange messages to make sure that it’s a good fit. Some websites require renters to register, submit a copy of their official ID, and have a verified credit card; these extra security measures can help protect you as a property owner.

Peace of mind can go a long way toward a positive experience for both the renter and host.

tips for securing a rental property

9. Secure a Comprehensive Insurance Coverage

If you rent your place, it is part of the best practices to secure insurance. This will help you reduce the risks of unnecessary costs and cover your assets in case of damage.

In addition, some insurances cover potential problems that tenants may cause during their stay. Perhaps a landlord’s insurance is a basic insurance for this type of situation.

10. Schedule Regular Maintenance Checks

Schedule regular maintenance checks to identify and address any issues before they escalate. This includes checking for leaks, inspecting the HVAC system, and ensuring all appliances are in good working condition.

Regardless of how well your tenants take care of your place, you will surely need to do updates on security systems and other safety features. In addition, take this opportunity to review any updates on fair housing laws.

Watch this video for more ideas on how to shore up your rental.

Make Your Rental Property More Secure

One of the best ways of ensuring the security of your rental property is to install adequate security systems, from simple door locks to complex surveillance cameras. To help you assess your place’s security needs and install the appropriate systems for you, contact Great Valley Lockshop.

For more information on how to properly secure your vacation rental and for information on smart locks, contact Great Valley Lockshop today by calling 484-324-2986 or filling out an estimate request online.

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