If you own a condominium, apartment building, military-housing complex, or senior housing unit, you’re familiar with the unique needs of managing multi-family dwellings. These types of properties have unique security needs. Since they consist of multiple households, these properties have more guests, receive more deliveries, and generally have higher foot traffic.
Consequently, homes in these dwellings are at higher risk for accidents and security threats, meaning you need to have proper on-site security measures to limit your liabilities and protect the residents. Here are essential tips for keeping multi-family properties safe.
Cultivate a Sense of Community
When residents know each other and are friendly to their neighbors, they are more likely to protect each other’s property. Organizing get-togethers, keeping community gardens and other areas for socializing, and encouraging interactions enable your lessees to build a community and look out for each other’s safety.
Put Security Cameras in Common Areas
Security cameras are a must for fitness centers, pools, hallways, lobbies, dumpsters, and elevators. Monitoring common areas is one of the first things you should do to ensure better building security. Besides having cameras, you must implement measures like providing unit owners with keys, having fingerprint or card access, and stationing guards with access logs at entrances. Combining access control mechanisms enables you better to identify parties responsible for theft or property damage.
Use Light to Deter Criminal Activity
Well-lit common areas make residents feel safer. If your pathways, parking lots, and hallways have plenty of lighting, it will deter opportunistic criminals. People are likelier to act out if they’re in a dark area. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, improving street lighting in a residential area could lead to a decrease in criminal activity of up to 21 percent.
Conduct Thorough Background Checks
Ward off would-be employees or residents with sketchy or questionable backgrounds with mandatory checks. Having background checks means a greater likelihood of leasing to or employing trustworthy individuals.
Also, ensure that your on-site security guards and other employees have ID badges or uniforms. These identifiers add a layer of security—IDs and uniforms reduce the chances of residents getting fooled by an impostor who poses as a repairman or service crew member. Without IDs or uniforms, your residents might let someone in and find themselves in danger.
Include Homes and Residents in Your Plans
Housing units need to have locks on windows, deadbolt locks, smoke detectors, and other things that ensure security. Besides installing them, you need to check on these items regularly to ensure that they’re working and fix them if they’re not.
Building managers must also educate the residents on why they shouldn’t let strangers into the building or complex. Residents need to know the consequences of letting in a stranger, even someone who claims to know a resident or employee of the building.
Encourage Lessees to Build Security Systems
Security systems provide each resident with even more protection. However, different people have different lifestyles, and residents might want to base the safeguards they choose on their lifestyle and needs.
For example, a family that takes frequent out-of-town trips will have different security needs than one that always stays at home. Provide new lessees with the option to install a security system for their homes. Connect them with vendors and resources that can make the process quicker.
Safe and secure communities do not happen by accident. Building managers, residents, and homeowners must be mindful of security. They must follow protocols and install the necessary equipment to keep a multi-family structure safe.
Trust S&S with your multi-family facility’s security needs. We provide comprehensive, professional security services in Texas, covering Austin, Beaumont, La Porte, and more. Get a free quote today, or contact us for other inquiries!