Choosing a Secure Apartment Will Help You Sleep at Night
Any police officer will tell you that they most frequently get called to apartment complexes about domestic disputes and burglaries. They’ll also tell you that there are a number of things you can look for before you even move into an apartment home to ensure your safety. Choosing a secure apartment can make a big difference in the quality of rest you get at night – and the enjoyment you derive from being at home.
Pay Attention to the Application Process
Did it take an hour or two to complete your rental application? Did they check your references? That’s a good sign, however painful it might have been. Thorough screenings are important if you’re serious about choosing a secure apartment. How well they screen you will be how well they screen your neighbors.
Go with an Upper Floor
While it’s a pain to lug furniture, groceries, and other stuff into the elevator or up and down the stairs, if choosing a secure apartment is your priority, go with an upper floor. Breaking into a first floor apartment sure looks easier to a thief. If it’s in your budget, take a look at high-rise apartments.
Examine the Outside Areas
Take a look at any gates and fences. Are there any? If so, are they just for looks, or are you actually getting some security for your money? A lot of apartment complexes have a big, fancy looking gate and fence at the front, and then nothing at the back, or something so short a snake could jump it. If there’s a keypad entry system, try to go in one day without buzzing in. Try driving through the gate behind another car and see how easy it is. If there’s a security guard, try and talk your way in after the office is closed. Tell him/her that you just want to take a look around the place, and see how easily you can talk your way in.
Trace the steps you’ll frequently take from where you’ll park your car to your apartment, or other frequent areas, such as your mailbox, the laundry or gym area. How well-lit are they?
Examine the Apartment
Take a careful look at the doors and windows. How thick and sturdy are the doors? How easy is it to open a window from the outside? Does the door have a peephole so you can see who’s there before you open it?
Talk to Current Residents
Current residents will know and will probably tell you if there have been a lot of problems. Try to drive around one night after dark and see if there are residents walking around the buildings. If they feel secure, chances are you will too.
Talk to the Management
Find out if the office will check on your apartment or collect your mail for you during an extended absence. Ask them if the locks were changed since the last renter, and if you’re not satisfied, ask to see the receipt for the locksmith. Ask who has access to your apartment and what the policies are for letting employees have a master key.
Talk to the Local Police About Choosing a Secure Apartment
Most police officers are happy to help you before you have to call 911. They may or may not have statistics on the crime rate at a particular apartment complex.
While we can’t assure you that nothing will ever happen in your apartment renting experience, we hope these tips will help ensure that you’re successful in choosing a more secure apartment.
ApartmentSearch by CORT does not guarantee security or safety at any property. For local crime statistics and information, please contact you local law enforcement agency.