There’s no time like Christmas and the summer holidays to make sure security is in order at your rental, says Jones and Co director Kelly Jones.
In Western Australia, landlords are responsible for ensuring a minimum level of security is in place, so reminding tenants of their obligations is also advisable at this time of the year.
“Letting tenants know that there are some simple measures they can take to protect their belongings also ensures your investment is protected,” Kelly said. “Your property manager will also make sure this happens but often it’s as simple as giving tenants a checklist.”
Jones and Co have shared their top tips for holiday security.
- Stop your mail: There’s nothing quite like a full or overflowing letterbox that tells a burglar there’s no-one home. Australia Post can arrange a redirection or a hold on your mail.
- Clean up your yard: Lock ladders, gardening tools and anything that might aid a break-in away in the shed. Also, you should keep trees and shrubs trimmed to reduce places where burglars can hide or gain access without being seen. When you’re doing this, make sure windows and doors are visible from the street. According to the RAC, it can take a burglar less than five minutes to enter a home, so it’s unlikely neighbours will even see it happening.
- Leave a light on: Hook up lights to a timer and rotate different rooms on different nights. There’s no deterrent like a well-lit house. Even an old radio can be a handy and cheap addition to home security. Motion sensor lights installed around the exterior of your house are also great deterrents.
- Don’t post to social media: Ignore that nagging FOMO feeling and resist the urge to post your every holiday move on Facebook and Instagram. And make sure your kids are on board – the last thing you need is your departure blasted all over TikTok.
- Hide your valuables: People are so quick to flee the suburbs after Christmas they often leave expensive gifts around in full view of prying eyes. Make sure valuable items are out of sight and/or locked away.
- Rubbish bins: Call on a neighbour to put out your bins and stick to the normal timetable. If you put your bin out early you may as well stick a “we’re away on holidays” poster on your front door. And don’t leave discarded boxes from your new Christmas MacBook Pro in the recycling bin. That will prove irresistible for opportunistic thieves.
- Holiday reading: Cancel your newspapers. And don’t forget the community papers that also end up on your driveway. A pile of unwrapped papers is a dead giveaway.
- Lock down: Don’t leave spare house keys hidden outside your home. A neighbour or trusted friend is a far more secure alternative.
- Alarm bells: Consider installing an alarm and always activate it when you leave home.
- Check all doors and windows and make sure that locks are secure and in working order. In many break-ins, police find that not all entry points are locked and burglaries could have been prevented.
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