Have you ever worried that maybe your rental units aren’t safe enough, or that something awful might happen to your guests or business? Are you constantly worried about your vacation rentals being broken into? Has the thought of a running tap in your empty rental kept you up at night? Do you find yourself driving to empty rentals during off-season to make sure nothing has happened? Is this article starting to sound like an infomercial from the 1950’s?
It’s 2018, and these days, just about everything is technological, and your rentals need to get with the times.
We’ve compiled a list of the latest gadgets for you to create your own home security system to keep your guests and rentals safe at all times.
DIY Home Security System
That’s right, do it yourself, you don’t even need to call a handyman, just grab your handy-dandy toolbox and find a couple of hours to set everything up and presto you’re rentals will be safe and sound.
As a property manager who is always on the go, it’s difficult for you to know what’s really going on inside your rentals. We’ve all heard some horror stories of guests throwing wild parties or bringing in illegal substances, ruining valuable furniture and completely trashing rentals. Although it’s forbidden to have hidden cameras, you can gain some insight that things are smooth sailing with various safety devices that can sync to your smartphone.
Know Who’s at Your Door – Doorbell Camera System
Most of the time you’ve never met your guest before they arrive, and newsflash, sometimes people on the internet aren’t who they say they are (gasp!). To personally verify that your guest matches their profile you need to install a video doorbell. The camera and speaker are disguised within the bell button and allow for two way communication, whether you’re inside your rental or halfway across the world. When a guest rings the bell you’ll receive a notification and live video showing who is at the door, giving you enough time to check that they match their Airbnb profile before deciding to let them in.
Prevent a Fire, Hands-Free
A stove top firestop (say that 10 times fast) is a fire extinguisher in a can. This bell-shaped device magnetically attaches to the exhaust hood and lasts up to six years. If a grease fire ignites on the stove, it will immediately extinguish it by spraying fire suppression powder before the smart smoke detector even goes off.
A no smoking policy is merely a suggestion without a smart smoke detector to back it up. Modern smart smoke detectors can connect to your smartphone to notify you if they’re beeping. You can then call the tenant to see if dinner is burning or if something else is going on. A call from a property manager is a pretty good incentive for your guests to start obeying the house rules, don’t you think?
But a smoke detector isn’t all you need.
Carbon monoxide is called the silent killer for a reason, and the only way to be aware of its presence is with a carbon monoxide detector. This simple device can save lives and your business. To save a few extra bucks, opt for a two-in-one carbon monoxide and smart smoke detector, and connect it to your smartphone. If you’re notified about the presence of carbon monoxide or smoke, immediately contact the fire department. We can guarantee that you will not regret this investment.
But Wait… There are More Detectors!
Unlike ghosts, intruders tend to enter through doors and windows which can easily be secured with discrete motion sensors. Their miniature gizmos can be painted to match the window or door frame, and use bluetooth to connect to any home security system. As a property manager often away from the rental, you can opt to receive a notification or phone call if the alarm sounds. In the event that you are unable to respond in time, the local authorities will be alerted.
Pollution is harmful to the environment, and noise pollution can be detrimental to your business. Rowdiness and calls from your neighbors, or even the police, are often indicators of a wild house party that you did not intend to host, or attend. Thankfully NoiseAware came up with a solution by creating the first ever noise detector. Designed to look like a standard smoke detector this device will send you a text message when the volume level in your rental passes the appropriate standard, which is the perfect time for you to shut down the party, before it gets out of hand.
Swap a Plumber for a Leak Preventing Robot
Prevent water damage before it has the chance to ruin your rental. Attach a smart home valve sensor to existing valves as opposed to hiring a plumber to replace old ones. This friendly robot will detect a leak and shut off any necessary valves, and of course send you a notification (ding!).
As opposed to checking that a guest didn’t forget to shut off the tap, or finding out once its already too late, install a flood preventing device. Once water level reaches the overflow outlet, in the sink or tub, the device will instantly shut off the tap. Overflow averted.
A leak that lasts only a mere few hours can cause damage that will cost you thousands of dollars, and can take months to repair, not to mention the financial burden of not being able to rent out your unit. Homes unattended for long periods of time are more vulnerable to long lasting leaks. So why not install a few preemptive robots?
Scare Them Silent With a Barking Alarm
It’s the 21st century – that red ‘Beware of Dog’ sign isn’t fooling anyone, especially intruders, but a barking dog alarm will. It sounds exactly like the real thing and won’t pee on your rug. Can I get a woof woof?
Lock Up, Without a Key
The days of handing over keys in the middle of the night are long behind you thanks to smart locks and automated check-in. The code changes per reservation, and integrates with your property management software, ensuring that only those welcome in the rental can enter.
With all these various security systems hooked up to your smartphone, we recommend clearly labeling each one to avoid confusion, and to help stay organized and handle the given situation appropriately. Vacation rental property safety is not meant to be taken lightly, but these gadgets and tips can lighten your workload.
If you’re interested in learning more about property management and discovering the many ways Guesty's platform can help your business, we invite you to a free one-on-one session with one of our experts.