While there are no specific security measures for your property to legally adhere to, there are measures you can take as a landlord to protect your property and tenants from potential intruders – especially opportunistic burglars.
You can take steps yourself to protect your property from potential damage and make it a safer, more attractive proposition on the buy-to-let market. Burglaries are uncommon, but one in five of all burglaries take place through doors and open windows. These areas are often taken for granted as the strongest elements of property protection. This is still true, but only if they are properly maintained. Knowing this, we have provided some simple precautionary tips on various elements of your property to help you limit the opportunities for burglars.
Experienced insurance provider, Total Landlord Insurance have put together the following tips for you to forge a strong reputation for yourself within the buy-to-let community as a security-conscious landlord, and give yourself peace of mind regarding the welfare of both your property and your tenants.
Whilst it’s not a legal obligation for landlords to fit burglar alarms, doing so can help make your property more attractive to potential tenants. When fitting, make sure they are tested and working properly. Audible alarm systems with flash lights are hugely effective against burglars as the loud ringing noise will bring them exactly what they don’t want; attention from the neighborhood.
To ensure wooden front doors are highly secured, it is best to have them as a solid timber. There should also be a British Standard 5-lever mortice lock one third of the way up plus an automatic deadlocking rim l
atch one third of the way down. Also, hinge bolts should ideally be fitted to outward opening doors to ensure further protection from forceful entry. To strengthen the glass in your doors, glass panels should be replaced with laminated glass or reinforced with security film or grilles. PVCu and aluminium doors generally have multi-locking systems.
It is imperative to make sure tenants understand that they have to lift the handle, lock it with the key and remove it. This serves to prevent burglars reaching in through the letterbox to open the door or to using a sharp tool to force the locking mechanism open. Tell the tenant to put the keys in a safe and easily accessible place in case of an emergency, e.g. fire or flood.
Door viewers enable you to see anyone who knocks on your door or rings your doorbell (without them seeing you) before opening the first port to your home. Door viewers are invaluable especially if you have vulnerable or elderly tenants. Letterbox Internal letterbox shields should be installed to prevent access to the handle inside and also stop the occurrence of keys being fished through the letterbox with a makeshift contraption by any conniving cat burglars.
For all ground floor windows and any windows that are easily accessible, window handles should have multi-locking with shoot bolts installed in the frame. If not, surface mounted, key operated window locks should be fitted (except if the window is being used as a fire escape). However, any externally beaded PVCu and aluminium windows will also need to be secured with security clips, security tape or sealant. Security lighting Security lighting increases vision and makes burglars feel vulnerable and acutely aware of the higher chance they’ll be spotted, meaning it’s consequentially much less likely that they’ll choose to target your property.
Not necessarily a home-security necessity, but if you want to be extra careful and have more maintenance over your property, you can also have CCTV installed to ward off burglars even further. Security footage would also be instrumental in identifying intruders in the unlikely event that a burglary takes place.
Fully Prepared for Property Protection
So, if you’ve taken all or some of these tips into consideration, then you can rest assured that you have taken excellent measures to ensure that the property your tenants are occupying is protected to a high standard.