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by Niman Singh

Due to high unemployment and the worst recession since the Great Depression, crime numbers have picked up across the nation.

VandalsLandlords and property managers have a higher probability of crime occurring on their residential rental property.
Obviously, any crime including vandalism will result in a negative impact on the value of the property.

The good news is that landlords and property managers can take steps to prevent and even stop crime on their properties. Again an ounce of prevention is better than pound of cure which can protect landlords and property managers from expensive lawsuits.

The following tips can eliminate the risk of crime on residential rental properties at very little or no expense.

1. Rent To Quality Tenants: Landlords and Property Managers should not be too anxious to rent a property. Tenant Screening is one of the most important steps to prevent crime on a residential rental property. The cost of tenant screening can be covered by the application fee paid by the tenant. Read the blog on Tenant Screening for tips.

2. Maintain Propertys Interior and Exterior: By keeping residential rental property well maintained, landlords and property managers can prevent crime. If a property is well lit and shrubs and trees are kept trimmed it will result in clear visibility and no place to hide. One of the rules of thumb is 3 foot, 6 foot rule for landscaping. The low ground coverage should be only 3 feet and all trees canopies should be 6 feet high. Lighting is the other element that deters crime on property.

3. Invoke Local Police Help: Most police departments have crime prevention programs and are willing to work with landlords, property managers and property management companies to prevent crime. A crime free multi-housing program offered by many police departments can be leveraged for other residential rental properties. Tap into this free service.

Follow these steps and prevent crime on your property saving yourself from any pain and agony of a lawsuit.

Niman Singh is with TReXGlobal, the makers of Simplifyem Property Management Software.
See our series Crucial Tax Tips for Landlords, provided by TReXGlobal.com.
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