Security is important for both property owner and tenant—you want to avoid burglaries and break-ins as much as the people living on your property. Luckily, you don’t have to spend a lot of money on an out-of-box or whole-home system to get the peace of mind that comes with great home security.
A few small, inexpensive updates can make a big difference. Add these five security updates to your maintenance list and prevent break-ins without breaking the bank.
Install Your Own Alarm System
A whole-home security system can be expensive when purchased as a kit, costing upwards of $500. Save yourself the high checkout bill by installing your own, starting with a wireless alarm system, and then pairing it with the components you need.
“Providing the same security as a professional alarm setup for a fraction of the price, a wireless alarm system can be added to, as you see fit. Motion detectors, glass-shatter alarms, and gate sensors are all compatible with these DIY kits, and you’ll never have to worry about paying for equipment you don’t need,” states the TheHomeSecuritySuperStore.com.
If you’re working on a small, inconsistent budget, start with your wireless system, and then add components every few months. Slowly building a custom security system your property needs and renters or buyers are looking for. Follow along with this DIY Security System Tutorial
Use Stickers, Warnings and Signs
In a survey of more than 400 burglars, 60 percent said they would find another target if an alarm was present. So, stick security decals, and signs on windows to include around your property. You may want to consider doing this, even if you don’t have an alarm system installed, creating a deterrent. This is easy to do, extremely cost effective, $5 to $10, and can be a good placeholder until you have time to install an entire system.
Choose your sticker positioning wisely, and don’t forget to buy a sign too, as the diagram shows below:
[Security stickers image – source]
Upgrade Your Locks
Locks can only do so much if tenants forget to use the. From data collected on break-in statistics, 30 percent of burglars entered a home through an unlocked door or window. As such, now is a good time to consider updating your locks.
Most homes come with the standard knob lock or lever-handle lock and a deadbolt. The deadbolt provides a second line of defense, since knob locks can be picked, and lever-handle locks can be broken with force. But you may still want to look into stronger options like mortise locks or a double-cylinder deadbolt.
Digital locks are another great option for property managers, since you can program them with a code or enable remote locking and unlocking. You can control entry to your property from your smartphone, which is helpful if a renter loses his or her key, or if you can’t be on-site to open the door for them. Some digital models even lock automatically, which is great if you have forgetful tenants who don’t always lock the door.
Check out this Quora thread to see what experts recommend for your new digital door lock.
Use Timers for Your Lights
Burglars prefer to hit homes during daytime hours — between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. — when most people are at work or school. You can prevent break-ins if you can make a burglar think your property is occupied. Put your lights on a timer, preferably so they switch on and off randomly during the day. This creates the illusion that someone is home. Some timers will also let you add TVs and other electronics. Timers are an inexpensive way to fool potential burglars.
Throw Some Shade
Big, open windows are great to let the sunlight in, but they serve as an open invite to burglars, and put your valuable items on display—your house is more enticing to a burglar when he can see your flat screen TV and your computers. Besides hiding what’s inside, a burglar would rather find a low-risk target. Window and door shades make it hard to tell if someone is home and updating your windows altogether can eliminate the need for these shades. Here are some more great ideas for how to best cover your property’s windows.
[Frosted secure windows – source]
All of these security updates are inexpensive, and easy to install for every property manager. Make sure you communicate with your tenants, and renters so they’re on the same page about safety and security. This approach to security allow you to budget for more upgrades along the way.
About the Author
Maile Proctor is a blogger and freelance editor. She writes about health and fitness, lifestyle, family and finance. She’s written for Lodgify, AllConnect, ApartmentGuide and more. Proctor earned her bachelor’s in broadcast journalism from Chapman University. When she’s not writing, she enjoys hiking in San Diego, California.