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January 16, 2018

Winter season is the time when many families go on a vacation and leave their property on property manager’s hands. It can go the other way around, and during holiday season property owners can invite relatives and friends to stay over, which may lead to more damage and more work for property managers.

Winter season is rumored to be the most difficult time for people, who maintain properties, especially because of the elevated risk of potential problems, such as fire hazards, extra damage, and even burglaries. So how can you ensure that the property you maintain stays safe and secure over the winter season? Here are some tips.

  1. Inform Residents

Before winter season even starts, property managers should already be prepared for anything that may happen during this time. The first step to get ready is to inform residents about the potential risks and hazards that may happen during the winter season that include possible burglaries and the risk of playing with fireworks and sparklers.

How do you communicate possible hazards to the residents? Create a brief note and hang it on the information stand where everyone can see it. Also, you may consider printing small leaflet containing the most common hazards and ways to prevent them.

  1. Inform Building Staff

If there are many people working with you, make sure that they understand the possible hazards as well as you do. After all, you can’t cope with all the tasks on your own, so a brief meeting before the upcoming holiday season and the hazards it may bring is absolutely vital.

One of the things you have to accentuate while informing the staff is Seasonal Lighting Requirements stipulated by the government. Make sure that all lights are installed by professionals, and everything works properly and is completely secure. If you overlook a residential area of townhouses, where owners often leave lights turning on every night and go for a vacation, make sure that such houses are properly supervised.

  1. Work With Local Police

Having a local police station on a speed dial is absolutely vital for a property manager. For sure, police officers know that during winter season crime rates increase by 30% because of the many holidays that are celebrated during this time of year. So you should always be alert.

You can also update the residents and the staff working with you about the importance of contacting the police in case of burglary or any other crime they may have witnessed. Raising awareness about these things will really help you spend the winter season without anything to worry about.

  1. Rely On Security Systems

If the property you maintain has a security system then you have half of your potential problems already solved. Security cameras are the only way you can identify suspicious people who may cause some damage to the property. “Once I was away to my parent’s house and left my apartment for a couple of weeks”, says James Wright, a manager at A-Writer. “One night my property manager noticed a strange movement near my door and immediately called the police. Thank God it turned out to be my neighbor!”

Besides identifying potential criminals and preventing burglaries, security systems will help you watch the whole area and prevent such hazards as fire, trees falling on electric wires and many more.

  1. Make Sure Your Staff is Easily Identifiable

The most common way for a burglar to get into the building besides getting through a door or a window is pretending to be a member of a maintenance personnel. You may mistakenly let this person in without even knowing that you’ve unwillingly let in a burglar!

The best way to avoid it is to figure out a way to identify the person. If you have some people working with you to maintain the building, you can come up with a system of IDs and distribute them among other maintenance employees.

If you have a person coming from other maintenance services, and you don’t know whether this person is a legitimate representative of this service or just a stranger, you can ask for an ID, and if this person refuses to show it, call the service that has sent this person. This way you will make sure that you’re not letting in a criminal.

Some concluding remarks...

Winter season is a period when all property managers should be alert. Some may think that this time is slower because many people leave but it’s very risky to allow yourself to relax this time of year. Empty apartments attract burglars and light attracts insects, so make sure you’ve done everything to keep the building safe and secure. Also, winter weather is very unpredictable, so having your staff alert and informed about potential problems and hazards is highly required this time of year.

Author Bio: Lucy Benton is a writing coach, an editor who finds her passion in expressing own thoughts as a blogger. She is constantly looking for the ways to improve her skills and expertise. Also Lucy has her own blog Pro Writing where you can check her last publications. If you’re interested in working with Lucy , you can find her on Twitter.

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