Home Security For Your Apartment

New Urban Apartment HouseIs it safer to live in an apartment or a house? The answer depends on the neighborhood. If you plan on moving to a new apartment or house it’s best to research the crime statistics for the neighborhood, which can be found on the FBI’s website. The next thing to question is how safe the security system is. The following tips will help you determine how safe your house or apartment is and whether or not you need to improve your security system.

Why Burglars Like Apartments

The main reason burglars stakeout apartments is because of the frequent amount of people coming and going, which

lowers suspicion of strangers. It’s easy to blend in since tenants are used to seeing new guests all the time. A stranger who hangs out near a  house, on the other hand, stands out. Another reason burglars like apartment complexes is that individual tenants typically do not invest in security systems because they figure the gate system shuts out unwanted trespassers.

Since apartment dwellers typically are not allowed to have pets, burglars take advantage of the fact that there usually aren’t watchdogs who alert their masters when a stranger approaches the apartment. Burglars are aware that people who live in apartments tend to be those who are trying to avoid the extra costs of living such as insurance and security. Other reasons why burglars prey on apartments include:

  • Females and seniors who live alone are often not secured

  • Apartments may not be far from where the burglars live

  • Cheap looking apartments tend to have owners that don’t invest in security

  • Complexes without a gated system provide easy access to apartments

  • Older apartments use chain locks, which are easy to break

  • Some apartments have an entry system that allows easy access for guests

Apartment Safety Advantages

Despite the fact that many burglars prefer robbing apartments rather than house, they still must deal with the reality that some apartments have certain advantages over houses when it comes to safety. One advantage is that some apartments hire private security to patrol the neighborhood at night. Another advantage is that the apartments are built close to each other, which gives burglars less places to hide. The frequent foot traffic also means more possible witnesses to suspicious activity. More luxurious apartments tend to be gated communities with plenty of other security features.

Why Homes Need Security

No matter where you choose to live you should still secure your property against unwanted intruders. Just because you live in a nice neighborhood doesn’t necessarily mean you are free from potential danger of theft. The main reason any home gets burglarized is that homes are easier to stake out in the daytime by thieves. A perpetrator simply can pose as a door to door salesman during the daytime and track which homes seem to be vacant before making a strike. Houses offer more hiding places than apartments, so even homes in nice communities need to be secured with active security systems. The most secure homes use the following:

  • Wireless removable cameras connected to the internet

  • High resolution security cameras

  • Alarm systems that can be seen in plain sight

  • Deadbolt locks on doors

  • Window locks

  • Peepholes on doors

Learn About Your Apartment Complex

The most important step in securing yourself from criminals is becoming familiar with your complex and its surroundings. Ask yourself these questions:

  • How well lit is the complex?

  • How quickly can a burglar escape from your complex without being seen?

  • Do the doors have deadbolts with long enough lock throws of 1.5 inches?

  • Are the doors jimmy-proof with strike plates secured by at least 3 inch screws?

  • Are there easy hiding places such as stairwells for intruders?

  • Can you see visitors well enough through the door peephole?

  • Are elevators well lit and equipped with phones?

Solutions for Apartment Residents

If your apartment complex does not already use cameras or alarms, you still have several viable options to secure your property. The easiest security system to install is a wireless alarm system because it doesn’t involve hooking up wires. These systems allow you to place sensors around doors and windows. If the wireless monitor is breached it will either sound an alarm or quietly alert authorities. Due to people being so conditioned to write off car alarm sounds as false alarms, it’s actually better to use a monitored alarm that doesn’t make noise, but ensures law enforcement will arrive on the scene as soon as possible.

Several features can be added to a monitored alarm that alert authorities of a break in. A glass breakage detector, for example, can let the police know when a window is broken. Floor mat sensors can also be helpful in tracking criminals. Motion detectors that activate bright lights when someone approaches the apartment can capture the intruders on video as well as scare them away.

Make sure the system you choose cannot be easily tripped by your pets, guests and delivery people. More sophisticated systems allow you to monitor security cameras on your mobile device. One of the extra benefits to having an alarm system that notifies authorities for crimes in progress is that such a system can provide you with a discount on renter’s insurance.

Other Helpful Tips

  • Always make sure your apartment is locked even for brief departures

  • Leave outdoor lights on at night

  • Keeping all doors including on balconies locked at all times is a good idea

  • Make sure all doors have deadbolt locks and all windows have locks

  • Use a sturdy piece of wood in the tracking of sliding doors

  • Do not store valuable items on your balcony or outside

  • Keep your bicycle locked to a structure

  • Make sure storage rooms are secure and stored items cannot be easily seen

  • Ask strangers at the door to provide credentials

  • Do not include your full name in an entrance telephone directory or mail slot

  • Teach your children about safety precautions

  • Keep a photographic record of your belongings

  • Consider engraving serial numbers on your belongings

For more information, contact us.