Vacation rental properties can be an attractive target for burglars and thieves. When you own a vacation rental property, it’s easy to worry about the safety and security of your home when it is unoccupied. So, what can you do to ensure that your vacation rental is safe when no one is there to keep an eye on it?
When having a security guard on site isn’t an option (for most people), various gadgets will serve as your eyes and ears on the ground. There are tons of vacation rental security options designed to put your mind at ease while your vacation property is far away, occupied by strangers, and serviced by outside help.
You can purchase affordable camera systems that can feed directly to your home computer, and convenient keyless entry devices that you can easily change for each new occupant- just to name a few. We’ll cover the top three security options for keeping your vacation rental safe.
Keyless Entry Systems
Not only are old-school keys super inconvenient, easily lost, and a pain to replace, they also aren’t very secure. A shifty occupant or contract worker could easily take a set of your keys and have them duplicated without your knowledge. But keyless entry systems can solve the convenience and the security issues that analog keys present.
Keyless entries are also called “smart locks,” and you’d be smart to get one. The device is installed in the door of the vacation rental where the regular doorknob would usually be. A keyless entry has a number pad on it where you can enter your key code, and give it to your guests or workers. You can change the keycode at any time for each new occupant or contractor for added security.
Some keyless entries are more sophisticated than others and operate via voice activation or the wave of a smartphone. There are remote-controlled keyless entries that allow you to change the code from your smartphone or computer, which is incredibly helpful for vacation rental owners since you don’t need to go to the property to change the code.
The downside? Keyless entries are a little more expensive than a set of keys and a regular doorknob, and wireless ones can stop working if the internet goes down at the house. But they are worth the investment for added security and peace-of-mind.
IP Camera Systems (PoE)
These systems are an excellent investment for vacation rental security. They aren’t like a closed-circuit television or CCTV camera that requires a local recording device, which isn’t at all helpful for vacation rental owners. IP camera systems or Internet Protocol cameras are wireless. Once installed, these digital video cameras send images and data that they capture over the internet. All data can be accessed remotely. These systems are great for vacation rentals that are located in areas prone to natural disasters. Instead of fretting and worrying over the state of your rental if a huge storm or flood is approaching the area, you can keep an eye on the property (and the weather) from the safety and convenience of your home. There are dozens of reputable and affordable IP camera systems on the market, and many can be customized to meet your specific needs.
There’s a reason we’ve specified “PoE” camera systems too. It stands for “Power over Ethernet”, which just means the camera receives its power and sends video transmission via an ethernet cable. This is ideal because:
A) Hardwired camera connections offer a more reliable video stream with less downtime, and are often higher quality.
B) Rather than having an extra cable for power that would need an outlet nearby, a single cable runs to each camera from your hub. That means you have more options for placement (no reliance on power outlets) and you’ll have the best possible video quality and connection.
While there are many wireless camera systems out there with great quality and reception, it still won’t compare to that of a hardwired system. Wireless systems are also *not actually wireless*. They still require a power connections, which means you’ll be at square one looking for a power outlet to plug them into. This negates any gained range and placement options you may have gained from a truly wireless setup. Just go PoE!
It’s also worth noting that vacation rental security systems are becoming more unified. That means door locks, security cameras, air conditioning, etc are all controlled by the same system. This is what is known as a “smart home” system.
A good example of such can be seen in the second season of Netflix’s Instant Hotel. One of the homes has a sensor at the door that broadcasts and records a video feed of anyone on the doorstep.
Many VR management software options, including Tokeet, are working to integrate with these smart home systems to provide a truly automated experience for guest bookings, arrivals, and departures.
Invest in a Safe
Your guests probably have valuables that they will want to keep secure during their stays, like passports or jewelry. It’s a good idea to invest in a safe with a key code entry that your guests can use to protect their valuables while they enjoy their stay at your vacation rental. Offering a secure safe for guests to use can also minimize your risk and liability should guests lose a valuable belonging or a passport.
Having a safe for your guests to use can also be included as an amenity in your property description – security is highly valued, after all.