Do you have a car break-in problem at your apartment complex? If so, you aren’t alone. It’s a common problem all over the United States. Thieves usually target vehicles in the middle of the night, leaving residents to face the damage in the morning. This is precisely what happened to roughly 50 cars parked inside a secured garage at a Houston apartment complex. The Houston Police Department began getting calls about car break-ins at 3:45 a.m. and they continued to pour in. Police received surveillance video from the residential property for review.
Car break-ins can leave residents feeling victimized and unsafe, which can result in a loss of Net Operating Income for you. A property with a reputation for being unsafe and unsecure is a deterrent for potential residents and can cause current ones to move out.
If you want to help prevent car break-ins at your multifamily apartment complex, you must be proactive. At a minimum, remind residents of the various ways to lessen the likelihood of getting targeted. Nationwide posted an article titled “Prevent car break-ins.” In it, they state there is no way to completely deter this criminal activity, but there are things drivers can do to decrease the likelihood of being struck. Because most thieves are opportunists, drivers should make their vehicle a less appealing target by hiding any valuables that are inside the car. This includes phones, wallets, computers and shopping bags. Other theft prevention tips include always locking the doors, ensuring the windows and sunroofs are closed, parking in well-lit areas and never leaving the car running while it is unattended.
On a bigger scale, property managers should take additional security measures to help prevent car break-ins. This can include installing additional lighting in the parking lot or garage. Another tactic to increase overall security is to use a video surveillance service. Stealth’s trained security operators watch properties in real time. If they see suspicious activity, they will activate an on-site speaker warning or call the local authorities. Police respond faster to Stealth calls because the activity is verified as a crime in progress. This increases the likelihood that they will arrive before the criminals leave the property.
In a recent incident at an Arlington, Texas apartment complex, a Stealth operator saw three teenagers breaking into cars in the parking lot. She watched as they jiggled the door handles and entered some of the cars. She quickly alerted the police and directed them right to the scene of the crime. The Arlington Police Department showed their gratitude to our trained operator with the Citizen’s Certificate Award and recognized Stealth for our continued partnership in their fight against crime. Take a look at video.
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Car break-ins are common problems, but there are preventative measures that can be taken to minimize their occurrence. If you have any questions or would like more information about video surveillance or apartment security, contact us here.