Investing in property can certainly be a shrewd move, but let's face it, it's not without its risks. Naturally, one of the key areas of concern for property investors is security; after all, protecting your investment and keeping your tenants safe is paramount to success. Here are some top security considerations to consider for your next investment property in Utah.

No Crime Zone: Finding a Safe Investment Neighborhood 

They say location (location, location) is key to smart real estate investing in real estate, and that rings somewhat true when it comes to crime rates, among other things. While some neighborhoods are safer than others, even the safest residential pockets are not completely immune to crime. Don't slack on your due diligence when it comes to a potential investment property's location, surrounding area and general safety aspects; is it close to a busy road or a dark, secluded area? Are there any nearby public places, such as a park or shopping center, that are known for attracting criminal activity? These are just some of the factors to consider when assessing the true safety of a property.

Digital Watchdog: Security System Safeguards

A security system is an undeniably important investment for keeping your property protected. While, yes, it's an added expense you might not relish the idea of, the cost of installing a security system pales in comparison to the peace of mind it provides, and the damage and losses it can help to avoid. Consider installing a system with integrated surveillance cameras, motion sensors, and door and window sensors - and if you want to go all out, you can opt for a monitored system that will notify the police or security company in the event of a security breach occurring.

Lock It or Lose it

Keeping your valuables under lock and key is a no-brainer, and this goes for your real estate, too. Installing high-quality locks is one of the easiest and most effective ways to help prevent break-ins (and deter attempts). Kit all windows and doors out with robust, secure locks, and replace them as and when necessary. Additionally, make sure you run your tenants through the importance of locking up properly, and keeping their doors and windows secure.

Spotlight on Safety

Burglars aren't fans of the spotlight, and a well-lit property is an extremely effective deterrent. Install reliable outdoor lights around the perimeter of the property and make sure they are regularly tested. You should also consider investing in motion-activated lights, as they are more energy-efficient than leaving lights on through the night, and when they are set off, it’s bright lights, big city - providing a prompt to your tenants to have a squiz out the window and hopefully send any opportunistic crime packing. 

Bushes and Burglars: Landscaping for Security

Landscaping is typically thought of in terms of aesthetics and general garden functionality, but it’s also surprisingly important to consider when it comes to security; for example, overgrown trees and bushes can provide some handy cover for burglars willing to skirmish into your property's perimeter. So, regularly trim back any bushy overgrowth, and take a walk around the property to identify any burglar-friendly spots, such as near windows or doors, that need to be addressed. Also, consider planting thorny shrubs beneath windows to give thieves reason to take a hard pass on your (prickly) pad. 

The Camera Conundrum

When it comes to surveillance cameras, there are essentially two main types to consider: dome cameras vs. bullet cameras. Dome cameras are an excellent choice for indoor use, as they offer a 360-degree view and are not easily tampered with. Bullet cameras, on the other hand, are ideal for outdoor use, as they're weatherproof and have a longer capture range. Ultimately, camera-choice comes down to location, environment and capture needs as well as budget - so be thorough in your deliberations for best results.

Neighbors on Duty: Building a Network of Watchful Eyes

Neighbors can be an invaluable asset to keeping your property secure, so it pays to establish a good relationship with them and encourage them to keep their eyes peeled for any suspicious activity. Friendly neighbors can also help make it seem like there is someone home when there isn't, such as by picking up mail and packages - it's often the little details that can make burglars second-guess the burglarability (sure, it's a word) of your property.

Taking Care of Business: The Importance of Regular Maintenance

The condition of your property is another factor that can have a significant impact on its security, as poor maintenance can create opportunities for burglars to enter. Any decent landlord will be sure to keep their properties well-maintained and in a good state of repair anyway, and with that comes the added advantage of maintaining optimal security. Additionally, regular maintenance of the security system itself, (and all associated components) is essential to ensure it is functioning correctly at all times.

The Last Line of Defense: Get Covered

We can only do so much to protect our property, and from there, it's in the hands of fate (or the cosmic roulette wheel?) In the event of a break-in or other security breach, you'll be beyond miserable if you find that you are not adequately covered to protect both the property itself and the personal effects belonging to your tenants. Get good insurance

Don’t Skimp on Security

Whether in the Beehive State or beyond, savvy property investment includes careful location considerations, meaningful security measures and quality security system technologies. Be sure to stay at the forefront of security tech as well, as the advancements are coming through thick and fast - but still, don't overlook the good old-fashioned value of neighborhood watch.