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If you’re renting out your property, there’s a lot to organise to make sure that everything is in place for your tenant, but inevitably you may be worried about the security risk too.

When it’s your own home, it’s easy to make sure you take the necessary steps to keep everything secure and properly protected but when you’re reliant on someone else, it’s a very different matter.

However, as a landlord there are some steps you can take to improve the security on your rental property and help it stay well protected and safe.

Carry out background checks

If you’re new to renting out your home, you might not yet have an established procedure for checking out new tenants.

As well as taking references from their previous landlord, it’s a good idea to also run a background check on your potential tenant. If you use an agency they can do it for you, but it is also possible to do this yourself.

This will let you know about any potential financial issues and problems so you can make an informed decision about whether you have the right tenant for your property.

Issue a security pack

When a new tenant moves into your property, it’s a good idea to issue them with a security pack.

This includes not just the keys to doors and windows but instructions on how to keep everything safe. This could cover everything from not hanging keys up near to the letter box (where they can be “fished” for with a coat hanger) to keeping keys out of sight and away from windows.

Some of the information might sound obvious but your tenants may be new to living on their own, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Get a professional check

You might think that your locks are in good working order but arranging for your local locksmith to come and review your security arrangements is a good idea.

Some types of lock may appear to be strong and safe but actually are very vulnerable to a practice known as “lock snapping”. This is a new type of forced method of entry which allows burglars to gain access very quickly and with the minimum of effort. Modern uPVC doors are mainly at risk so you might benefit from a lock upgrade if you have a standard euro cylinder installed.

A locksmith can review all of your security arrangements around the property and make suggestions for areas that you could improve on. If your security doesn’t need any upgrades, you will have the reassurance of knowing that it’s been thoroughly checked by a professional.

Lighting

Burglars are attracted to dim, dingy and dark areas so consider investing in outdoor lighting around your property. Motion sensitive or timed lights work particularly well and can make your property less attractive to would-be thieves.

Making sure that any communal areas are well-lit and all broken bulbs replaced is important too; impress on your tenants the need to let you know when anything needs replacing.

Outside space

If you have an outside space, make sure that it’s neat, well-trimmed and not overgrown. A garden which has bushy shrubs and overhanging branches provides plenty of places for burglars to hide.

Keep everything trimmed back and neat, and not only will your property appear more attractive but it will be a safer place for your tenants too.

Having good locks on your doors and windows will obviously be one of the first steps you take to secure your rental property but that’s just the start of making sure everything is safe. The above measures will help burglars pass by your property and will keep your tenants safe while they are living there too.

What Is Locksnapping?

You may well have heard of “cylinder snapping” or “lock snapping”. It’s a method used by burglars to break into property that is secured using a euro cylinder (e.g. almost all properties that have UPVC doors, although a significant number of composite and aluminium doors use them too, and they’re often used in commercial as well as domestic environments).

The method of lock snapping involves breaking the cylinder to then manipulate the lock to open. Whilst you may think that all the multi locking points on your door make it secure, it’s important to realise they are all operated by the cylinder – this is the weakest point and if compromised all the locking points are rendered useless.