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Renting an apartment? You will still need an apartment security system.

Why is it important for renters to install apartment security systems?

One basic and very obvious reason to keep your place secure is the residential lease agreement. Most rental agreements require maintaining and returning the apartment in the same condition as rented on the first date of the lease. Some include extra insurance fees. Others ask for strict adherence to the rules of the overall security system for apartment renters for the whole building or set damage compensation fees for lease security violations. Just because you don’t own the apartment doesn’t mean that you won’t be held responsible for thefts, burglaries or robberies when something happens.

window
‍An unprotected window on the first floor is an open invitation for burglars

Having more people around in a building is not a guarantee for a peace of mind in your own apartment. Disabling the general access control security system for the apartments can create an abundance of opportunities for thieves; it’s like having a dozen of separate mini houses with no security at all. Criminals often rely on renters’ negligence and lack of interest in security when there are more people around or when the building has a security guard. Apartments are more vulnerable via open windows, simple lock-and-key options and the fact that most renters believe that someone else will notice the crime. Owning a peephole and changing the door locks won’t prevent home invasion in a busy building. This is why you should consider installing an apartment security system that works for your needs and keeps your home safe, especially when there are so many different and scalable alternatives.

What are some of the factors to consider when deciding an apartment security system?

Security systems for apartments can be organized for the whole building or scaled down to each apartment. Of course, it’s not easy to bring all renters on the same table. Their needs differ. The joint building security systems for apartment renters can include a CCTV camera or a security guard at the main building entrance but leave separate apartment floors and doors with no video surveillance. Including more cameras can be affordable for some and expensive for other renters.

In general, as a renter, you won’t have much control of how you can secure the whole building. Your apartment security system will heavily depend on your landlord’s will. This is even more important if you need to install wired systems or other access control alternatives that require severe deconstructions and changing the architecture of your apartment. Many landlords don’t let their tenants do that. If you want to secure your home in this way, you need to obtain your landlord’s signature or specify it in the agreement.

lease
check your lease before you take on securing your apartment

On the other hand, in a shared living, security and privacy mix. What may be secure for you, it can be an invasion of privacy for your neighbor. As a general rule, you will need to rely on your personal apartment security system. Shared cameras or access control can be considered only as an added option depending on how well you know the people in the building. Under the circumstances, you will need something simple and personalized. Wireless security systems for apartments are easy to install. Many even come with a do-it-yourself kit. All you need is to follow simple instructions. For others, security vendors can provide instructions and arrange a security contract that will fit well within your tenancy agreement.  

How much do typical apartment security systems usually cost?

Unless you can tell exactly what you want to secure and provide detailed specifications, there is not an easy answer to the question on how much do security systems for the apartment renters cost. Security vendors offer varying packages. That said, renters typically have preconceptions about unrealistic costs, forgetting that electronics and software are so advanced that basic security systems for apartments can come under a monthly contract for as little as $20, $30 or $40 per month. Most apartment security systems include a one-off installation fee in the range between $100 to $500, and scale up to $1,500, depending on the extra equipment you go for.

Don’t forget that you can choose what to include. Security systems for apartments are like small projects. Your role as a renter will be to act as project manager and calculate the subheads for the smartphone app, the activation fee, the installed equipment cost, the monitoring and maintenance fees, and adjust these separate costs to your apartment risk assessment plan. The risks will depend on the neighborhood area, as well as on the overall building security. However, you will be your own best risk assessor because no one else but you is able to adequately gauge the value of your possessions. A good risk assessment plan accompanied with a short market review and some expert help is usually sufficient to get the best value for your apartment security system.

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