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5 ways to make your apartment more secure

Safety tips for apartment, house and condo renters

When you think about someone breaking into your apartment, you probably think about it happening at night. You’re not alone — most people think the same thing. The truth is that most of the 4,500 daily break-ins happen in broad daylight. This is because thieves would much rather let themselves into your apartment and shop from your belongings when you’re at work. So, how do you make your apartment more secure? You don’t need to spend a fortune on hiring professional security services. Some simple precautions can really help. 

5 Tips for making your apartment secure

1. Double-check your doors and windows 

The majority of break-ins happen because the burglar finds an unlocked window or door. If yours are all securely locked, they’ll likely move on and try to find an easier target. The more time they have to spend trying to break-in, the more likely they are to get caught, so simply keeping access points locked really helps.

This means it’s pretty important that you have locks that actually work well. If your door lock feels a little flimsy, update it with a good deadbolt. Replacement deadbolts can cost as little as $5 or you can get smart locks for as much as $200+.

Ultraloq smart lock for better security

Get approval from your landlord before installing locks that require you to drill a new hole in the door or necessitate new keys. Most likely, you can also ask your landlord to install new locks if you don’t feel like your locks are adequate.

Roost Tip! Make your apartment more secure with a low cost door jammer. A door jammer is a security gadget that prevent doors from being kicked in.
Secure deadbolt lock
$18.99 On amazon

2. Don’t leave valuables out in the open

One of the main reasons a burglar tries to break in is because they actually see something they want out in the open. If they can just grab and go, their chances of getting caught are pretty low. Typically, they’re looking for items that are high value and easy to haul away, such as:

  • Laptops
  • Tablets
  • Headphones
  • Watches
  • Jewelry
  • Bicycles
  • Weapons

While keeping things out of sight might seem like a simple fix, the trick is to do it every time you leave your home. Put your jewelry and watches away in your dresser or a jewelry box. Keep your laptop or tablet in a case or slide it under the bed. Tuck away headphones (Beats, AirPods, etc). 

Of course, the easiest way to avoid things being seen from the outside is to keep your blinds or curtains closed when you aren’t home. Closing your blinds every time you leave is a good habit to get into, especially if you live on the ground floor.

3. Get to know your neighbors

Building a community can really help increase the safety and security of your home and belongings. If you build a relationship with your neighbors, they’ll probably notice if someone unusual is trying to get into your apartment while you’re at work or on vacation.

If you want to be even more proactive and discourage prowlers from even trying to get in, consider launching a neighborhood watch program. A neighborhood watch program is a group of people living in the same area who want to make their neighborhood safer by working together, in conjunction with local law enforcement, to reduce crime and improve their quality of life. Read our article 5 Simple ways to make your neighborhood safer place for more ideas.

4. Install an apartment security system or video doorbell

Even if you’re not a wiring genius, you can set up a wireless alarm system without spending a fortune. A number of new security systems have come on the market, including many that can connect to your phone. 

For as little as $0.50/day, a system like SimpliSafe protects your entire apartment and monitors every door, window and room. These types of systems sync with your smartphone and monitor remotely as you deem fit, as well as notify you and the security system company as soon as one of their monitors is tripped.

If you can’t afford an expensive in-home security system, video doorbells are a great way to monitor your door and keep an eye on who’s coming and going.

With Ring doorbells, not only can you see who’s at your door, but you can also set it up to get notifications when there’s movement in its field of vision. 

 Ring Secure Video doorbell

As an added bonus, there are options with two-way voice communication, so you can talk to whoever is at your door as well as see them!

5. Buy a safe

If all else fails and someone does break-in, having your most valuable items stashed away in a safe is your last line of defense — and it’s a pretty good one.

Safes are nearly impossible to break into without a key or the code and they tend to be extremely heavy. Both of these factors discourage theft.

Roost Tip! If you live in an apartment, you’ll want to hide your safe well because you won’t be able to secure it to the floor like you would if you were a home owner.

If you have expensive watches or jewelry, like to have some cash on hand, or have papers with your personal information on them (like a social security number), consider putting them into a safe. Safes can range from relatively cheap to relatively expensive, from $35.99 up to hundreds of dollars.

Sentrysafe safe with keys and valuables inside
$62.25 on amazon

SentrySafe X031 Security Safe was voted the best safe by Antitheft Boss in 2022 for Apartment rentals. 

“Place your valuables and personal documents in a safe — even if you have a home security system, a home safe can provide an added layer of security against burglars, as well as protecting your valuables from maintenance people, housekeepers or another visitor.” — Sadie Cornelius for Safe Smart Living

Don’t forget renters insurance 

It’s hard to make any place 100% break-in proof. Enter stage left, renters insurance! One of the best parts about renters insurance is it covers theft of your personal property.

Even better, it doesn’t matter where your stuff was stolen. It could’ve been out of your car or your hotel room, your stuff is covered.

Check out our article on Cheapest Rent Insurance to learn more.

Apartment safety begins with the place you pick  

One of the best ways to ensure your apartment is more secure begins with your selection of the unit in the first place. Next time you move, research the following for every location you’re considering:   

  • Local crime (rates, types, locations) on sites like CrimeReports, AreaVibes and Facebook Groups
  • Incidents in that specific apartment complex or building
  • Lights in the area — You don’t want to get home late one night and be in total darkness!
  • Secured apartment complexes that require a code to get in the front door are fantastic
  • Don’t rent apartments on the ground floor
  • Consider a dog (if your apartment allows them) most burglars won’t even bother if they hear a dog barking

If you take these few things into consideration when looking for the perfect place to move and follow the tips above to make your apartment more secure, you should be able to feel much safer in your home!

A quick note! Our goal is to gather and share info that’s up-to-date and helps you make great decisions as a renter. That said, the information you get directly from a provider could be a little different. Make sure to review their terms and conditions directly; and, if you see anything here that needs to be updated, please let us know! Advertising disclosure
Last Updated: March 11th, 2024