As a renter, there are responsibilities that you should consider that will help
you protect your home. From theft and burglary to frozen pipes and snow (and
all the things in between), here are some tips that you can use to ensure that you,
your family, your pets and your property are kept safe:
1. Meet your neighbors. Strive to have— at least—a cordial relationship with
your neighbors. Of course, this may be difficult if a neighbor is unwilling or
otherwise unpleasant, or if you don’t have any. But, when you have even the
simplest relationship with them, they can provide additional surveillance for
suspicious activity, property damage and safety hazards.
2. Buy a safe. Safes provide additional security to important belongings
like personal identification (e.g., birth certificate, Social Security card,
passport), jewelry, money and anything else that’s irreplaceable. And, many
home safes are water- and fireproof. So, these items will be less likely to be
damaged from leaks, floods, smoke and fire.
3. Travel with caution. Don’t post online that you’re away (or for how long)—
and consider ways to appear that you’re home. Ask friends or neighbors
to watch your property and to collect your mail. Leave a light on a timer that
could deter trespassers. And, unplug electronics to avoid potential fires. On
your luggage, don’t put your home address on the tags—these are rolling
advertisements that you aren’t home to anyone who sees it.
4. Be observant. Look for signs that you or your home are in danger: Change
the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors; check the locks
on doors and windows; look for leaks that could cause water damage and for
access points used by rodents; and pay attention for dangerous scents like gas,
smoke, mold and sewage.
5. Buy renters insurance. Before you move in, purchase renters insurance
to start on the first day of your lease. While it won’t cover damage to the
structure itself, it will cover damage to your property that’s inside the
structure, including theft. If your rental unit becomes uninhabitable, it
also may cover hotel expenses.
6. Give us a call. After an emergency, call 911 first. Then, give us a call so we
can help you. And, talk to us ahead of time so we can ensure that you have
adequate coverage for your belongings.
We look forward to hearing from you.