Best Practices for Securing Multi-Unit Housing Complexes

Written by: Richard Davalos, Director of Security Solutions

Having worked with several housing complexes, we tend to hear the same security problems come up over and over again.  Issues of theft, vandalism and homelessness are becoming far too familiar within this industry.

Property Managers face a constant struggle to provide consistent and effective security measures to combat these issues and make their residential communities feel safe.

To make matters worse, social media platforms allow residents and visitors to share their bad experiences through reviews, which ultimately decrease occupancy and revenue dollars for the housing complexes involved. The fact is that traditional security guards can only protect so much area and the cost of their services will continue to rise year over year in metropolitan areas in particular (Los Angeles, New York, etc.) which will eventually reach $15 minimum wage by 2020.  So what can be done to increase multi-unit housing security and save on costs?

Here are 7 tips that can help reduce the headaches at your sites:

1. Secure parking areas, emergency stairwells and garages: These are the most talked about issues at these properties.  Thieves, homeless and vandals take advantage of dark unnoticeable areas of the property.  Adequate LED lighting and strategically positioned cameras (infrared if necessary) are key to deter vagrants.

Secure parking areas

2. Alarms on doors: All emergency doors leading to the public should be alarmed to ensure the doors are closed properly.  A sensor system can be implemented to alert management of doors not closed properly.

Alarms on doors

3. Employee access only: All construction material, engineering rooms and supply closets need to be secured with limited access to authorized employees only.

Employee access

4. Utilizing cameras in common areas: Bike storage and mail boxes should be in secured areas with access to residents only.  A CCTV camera system should cover these areas to identify issues with vandalism and theft.

Security Camera

5. Communicate with residents: Constant and effective communication to residents is key to remind them about closing times for pool areas, laundry room, fitness rooms and playgrounds.   Educational signage and newsletters are effective to ensure residence take ownership of property rules.

Communicate with residents

6. Secure trash bins: Industrial trash bins should be protected and secured when possible to avoid illegal dumping and homeless.  In multi-level units all trash rooms should have cameras to ensure rooms are kept sanitary and clean.

Secure trash bins

7. Investment in CCTV: Alarm system and access control will pay dividends back if implemented properly.  A growing trend at the vanguard of security for multi-unit housing is “Remote Guarding”, a solution in which trained agents, processes, & modern technology come together to stop crime before it even happens.

 Elite Command Center

Click on the videos below to learn more about Remote Guarding and the impact it’s making on multi-unit housing security

Click here to contact Elite and learn more!