Living in an apartment comes with unique safety concerns. Not only do you live in close proximity to other tenants, but you also have a high volume of foot traffic, which may make it easier for intruders to break in. Here are some secret safety tips, aside from the run-of-the-mill suggestions for apartment renters:
1. Bolster Sliding Doors
Balconies can pose a safety risk to your apartment, especially if you have a sliding door. While it’s important to lock your doors, many sliding doors have inadequate locks and come off their tracks with a strong nudge. Bolster your sliding door with an inside bar lock or a pole on the track. You can also install a secondary locking mechanism with a metal pink inserted through the door frame and into the door. Even if you live above the first floor, you should still bolster your balcony doors—you’d be surprised how determined burglars can be.
2. Invest in Good Blinds
Good blinds or drapes can prevent burglars from peeking into your apartment and seeing your valuables. Install window treatments that completely block the view from the outside, and close them when you go out. That way, you’ll keep wandering eyes from scanning your apartment, and you’ll reduce your risk of break-ins.
3. Use a Safe
Consider getting a safe to lock up items such as jewelry, cash, firearms, and sensitive documents. Safes come in all sizes and price ranges, and you can even get an incognito one, disguised as regular household items, such as a water bottle or clock. Or you can talk to your landlord about bolting a safe to the floor or a wall, so a burglar can’t walk out with it. A safe can be an effective hiding place, especially when thieves are looking to grab valuables in plain sight and get out quickly.
4. Know Your Neighbors
It’s a good idea to know the people who live near you. Not only can they lend you a cup of sugar in a pinch, but they can also help you out in emergencies. If a neighbor hears you calling for help or if they hear a suspicious noise, they’re more likely to check on the situation if you know them. Build friendly relationships with your neighbors, exchange phone numbers, and look out for one another’s safety.
5. Install a Security System
In the past, security systems were not renter-friendly due to an intrusive installation process, but with new wireless technology, you can easily install a security system in your apartment and take it with you when you move. A few companies that offer apartment-friendly systems include FrontPoint, LifeShield, and SimpliSafe. If you’re looking for maximum safety in your apartment, consider a security system.
Take the time to make your apartment a safe and secure space. For more information on apartment security, read SafeWise’s Apartment Renter’s Guide to Home Security. If you have additional tips for keeping one step ahead of burglars, please let us know in the comments!