Property management is not always the easiest task – there are many things to consider to ensure your property remains in good shape through the years. This is especially true if for some reason your property becomes vacant; when a property becomes vacant, it is very susceptible to fire, squatters, vandalism, or other criminal activity. Needless to say, it’s a problem for landlords and property owners. However, there are certain things you can do to protect your assets. Here’s how to properly manage a vacant property: the top measures you should take.
Begin with the basics
If your property is going to be vacant, then your property will not need anything to make it comfortable for tenants. This may seem like an obvious statement to make, but it has some straightforward security consequences – there are certain steps to take to avoid squatters and to avoid fire or other hazards. Hence, the basic measures to take are:
Cut off all utilities. There’s no reason to have the water, electricity, or gas still up and running. This deters squatters and prevents fire or water damage.
Remove all valuables. With this we mean: anything that may have any value to you or anyone else – furniture, pots, pans… anything.
Remove all items that can burn or are combustible or hazardous in any way.
Arrange for notification
You will have a legal obligation to notify the police and fire department on the status of the property regarding occupancy. It’s also practical to inform the neighbours and ask them to keep an eye out and to call if they see anything suspicious happening. Also, gather all important documents and inform your insurance company regarding the vacancy.
It’s also a good idea to install fire detectors or other safety equipment such as sprinklers or other fire-fighting remedial installations.
If your property is in a neighbourhood where many suspicious activities occur or if your property is vulnerable to criminals, squatters, or vandals, you may want to consider security guards or night watchmen to guard the property, such as Oxford security specialists from Securipol.net. Other ideas: install a battery-run alarm system, and install a CCTV system that can be monitored from a distance.
Your property may be vacant, but it surely isn’t worthless – on the contrary, it’s still an investment and an investment should be protected at all times. Often, some simple measures will deter criminals, vandals, or squatters. At other times, some more serious arrangements need to be made. Either way, it’s wise to be prepared and the small expenses you incur for the safety of the property are minor if you picture the worst case scenario. Be smart and protect your property – it’s wise to be alert and to defend what’s yours.
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