Apartment Safety: Vacation Security Tips

Getting ready to head out on vacation this year? You’ve probably already planned for what you’re packing, how you’re getting there, hotels, activities and everything else you need to have a great time. However, you may be forgetting one essential element: securing your apartment. Nothing can bring a fun vacation to a screeching halt quicker than finding out you’ve had a break-in, or that there’s been damage from fire or water while you were gone. Follow these apartment security tips to ensure you’re doing everything you can to come back to a settled situation.

Check all door and window locks a few weeks before your vacation.

Is that front door lock a little loose? Have a window that just won’t close all the way that you’ve been ignoring? Make a note of these things a few weeks before your vacation so you can submit a service request to your apartment community maintenance department in a timely manner. Having these items fixed can help to secure your apartment against break-ins and theft.

Make sure the batteries in your smoke alarm are up to date.

If you’re not already checking the batteries on your apartment’s smoke alarm on a regular basis, you should be. However, getting a check in before leaving for vacation is crucial. Test your batteries to ensure they’re working properly a few days before you leave.

Think about your pets.

If you’re not boarding your pets while you’re on vacation, you’ll need to make arrangements for a trusted neighbor or a professional pet sitter to look in on them daily. Make sure they know the contact details for your veterinarian, as well as emergency contact numbers for you. Additionally, register for a free pet safety pack from the ASPCA, which includes an animal rescue window decal to alert emergency services that there is a pet inside.

Get some timers.

Timers are a great way to make it look like you’re at home even when you’re not, and better yet, they’re a fairly cheap investment. Simply plug the timer into your wall socket, set the times you’d like the power to go on and off, and plug in your light, TV or even a radio.

Let your apartment manager know you’ll be away.

Giving your apartment manager a head’s up that you’re going to be out of town for awhile is never a bad idea. If they’re aware you’re gone, they will be able to be more proactive should they see activity around your apartment. Another thing your apartment manager might be able to do for you is hold any packages or larger items of mail that might come in while you’re away.

Ask a trusted neighbor to keep an eye on your place for you.

If you’ve lived in your community for awhile, chances are you’ve made friends with a few neighbors who would be happy to keep an eye on your place for you. This can be particularly helpful for emergency situations where quick reactions are a necessity, such as smoke coming from your apartment. Make sure your trusted neighbors know when you’re going to be gone and how to contact you. Let them know you’re happy to return the favor when they head out on vacation.

Hot Tip: Make sure your renters insurance policy is up to date, too: it protects your valuables from water damage, fire, theft and the great unexpected. This might be especially important for senior apartments, which can hold more valuable belongings.

If you’re headed off to a well-earned vacation, security for your apartment is probably the last thing you want to think about. However, taking a few precautions prior to leaving can make your arrival home that much better. Do you have any apartment safety and security tips?



Source: apartmentguide.com

Watch For These 4 Danger Signs When Touring an Apartment

Landlord pointing at floor plan of apartment and giving apartment tourThe search for a new apartment can feel overwhelming. Time is often against you, and you may even begin your search from another state or country. You start by finding apartment options that fit within your desired area and price range. (Tools like ApartmentSearch are great to help you save time on this first part.) But usually, once you have the list narrowed down to a handful of options, you will want to visit the apartments in person. After a long day touring apartments, they often all begin to look the same.

However, there are some important differences you should look out for. Not all apartments are the same and sometimes the challenges can be hard to spot. This list will help you discover the wolf in sheep’s clothing.

Communication – or lack thereof – is key. When the community that you toured is slow about following up with you after the tour, that is a red flag. If they fail to provide adequate, prompt follow-up, then what will happen when you have a maintenance need or other question as a resident? On the other hand, if you left the community only two minutes ago and are receiving a non-personalized follow-up form letter, then they may care less about your visit and more about adhering to a set policy. If they truly care about you becoming a resident, they will follow-up in a proper amount of time and in a sincere way.

There’s more focus on regulations than apartment amenities. As a renter, you must accept certain guidelines and sign a lease in order to live there. However, when you tour a community, overuse of phrases related to your lease contract should be cause for alarm. Watch out for communities that value talking about what they hold residents accountable for rather than how they can help you feel like this apartment will be a home you are comfortable in.

There seem to be a lot of little inconveniences. For many apartment dwellers, it’s the small things that have the most impact. One or two tiny inconveniences are not a big deal, but little things can add up to become big daily nuisances. Look up and down during your apartment tour. Mold lines on exteriors of buildings and dirty breezeways/hallways can signal neglect. Test the water in the apartment. How long does it take for it to get hot? Do you get great cell service in the apartment? Does the light coming through the windows throughout the day (or even at night) meet your needs? Remember: this is going to be your home. Make sure it has all the comforts you want.

You have concerns outside of the tour. Some items can only be learned when you are not on the actual apartment tour and these can stand out like night and day. Visit the community at odd times, such as when your commute would begin/end and at night. Is it crowded getting in or out of the community grounds? At night, is the lighting adequate, allowing you to feel safe walking about? Is nighttime noise a factor? These lessons are best discovered on your own and can make all the difference during your life in your new apartment home.

Of course, there are many more factors to consider, but everything starts with finding the right place to live. Start your apartment-finding process by visiting www.apartmentsearch.com. It is fast… it is easy… and it is free. Make finding your next apartment easy when you visit ApartmentSearch today!

Source: blog.apartmentsearch.com