One of the reasons why people gravitate to strata living is the allure of ‘lock up and leave’ – the security of knowing your home is safe while you enjoy travel.
According to the 2016 Australian census, 10% (2,348,434) of us spent Census night in an apartment. There is now around one occupied apartment for every five occupied separate houses in Australia. Back in 1991, it was only one to every seven.
Plenty of apartments have security keys that allow only residents access to particular floors or even into the building itself. Quite a few townhomes have access gates which also helps reduce the chances of unauthorised people lurking about.
And, if you live in a community with on-site management, you have an extra set of eyes looking out for your home.
But even with all of these advantages there’s still plenty you can do to help make sure your place is safe and sound as you travel.
Hold Mail – Ask your caretaker to empty your mailbox and hold your mail until you return from your travel. Or, for a modest charge, Australia Post will hold your mail for you.
Timer Switches – According to a 2015 survey of criminals found guilty of break and enter offences, light on inside would deter nearly 20% of burglars. Timer switches are a quick and inexpensive security feature. Add them to lamps in living rooms and bedrooms. Use a timer switch on radios to give your place a lived-in feel, even when you’re not there.
Check your insurance policy – Did you know that your home and contents insurance may be void if your place is unoccupied for longer than two months? So, if you’re planning an extended trip, consider having a house sitter or talk to your insurer.
Loose Lips Sink Ships – Taking a holiday is exciting. Sharing all of your travel plans on social media can alert thieves as to the time and place you won’t be at home. A British survey revealed four out of five burglars used social media to determine who to target.
Consider Smart Phone Technology – you can still answer someone at the door, even if you’re not at home. Check out the new generation of wireless door bells that will ring your Smart Phone. Some even have a built-in camera and recording device.
SSKB is Australia’s leading strata management company specialising in delivering expert advice and management to Owners Corporation and Body Corporate communities.