When you live in an apartment, your safety concerns are unique. You live in close proximity to your neighbors, as well as a fair amount of foot traffic. The vast majority of the time, burglars will check to see if someone’s home before they break in, and sometimes apartment complexes make this task relatively easy. Many times in an apartment setting, it’s easier for thieves to pose as maintenance workers or someone who has mistakenly knocked on the wrong apartment door. One of the best things you can do to help ensure your apartment safety is to get to know your neighbors. Here’s what your fellow apartment tenants can do for you in terms of safety.

1. Keep an Eye Out

When your neighbors have your back, they can keep their eyes and ears open for suspicious activity when you’re not home. For example, if they know you work 9 to 5, but they see someone lurking around your apartment, they can give you a call to let you know or address the stranger to ask what they’re doing.

2. Check on You

If a neighbor hears a loud noise (such as glass breaking or a door being kicked in), they’re more likely to check on you if they know you. It’s a good idea to have someone nearby who you can count on to help you out in a pinch.

3. Receive Packages

When you go on vacation, it’s a good idea to have a trustworthy neighbor receive any packages, newspapers, or flyers that might accumulate at your apartment door. Pieces of mail that pile up are neon signs pointing to the fact that you’re not home.

4. Alert Authorities

If you’re not around, a neighbor who knows you is more likely to report suspicious activity to the authorities. If they see someone lurking around your apartment, attempting a break in, or asking lots of suspicious questions, then they can call the police and report the situation, possibly preventing a burglary.

5. Keep a Spare Key

These days, savvy thieves know all the typical places where people keep spare keys. The first places burglars will look are under your mat, in a flower pot, or in a conspicuously fake-looking rock. Instead of putting a key in a place where burglars will find it, keep a spare key with a trustworthy neighbor.

There’s safety in numbers. Safe apartments and communities are made by people getting to know each other and looking out for one another. You don’t have to be best friends with your neighbors, but you should definitely get to know them. If you aren’t on a first-name basis with your neighbors, head on over with a plate of cookies and introduce yourself. You’ll be surprised by the community and safety benefits that will come your way.

Image courtesy of zoetnet on Flickr.com.

Written by Hillary Johnston

A proud mother of four, Hillary is passionate about safety education. She holds a degree in Public Health and Disaster Management. Learn more

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