MANY areas in an apartment or condominium complex call for special caution and awareness not always required in single family dwellings. Many contributing factors to crime and safety are beyond the apartment dwellers immediate control.
Most landlords and managers are sensitive and responsive to the needs of their tenants. When you, the apartment dweller, are confronted by an unsafe situation beyond your control, notify the landlord/manager immediately. They have a responsibility to provide a safe, crime-free environment for their tenants if it is within their means to do so.
- Always make sure your apartment has been re-keyed prior to moving in.
- Know your neighbors. Learn to recognize and report suspicious activity to the Escondido Police Department at 760-839-4722.
- All exterior hinged doors should be of solid core construction and fitted with deadbolt locks and peephole viewers. It is extremely important that door locks are kept in good working order. Notify the landlord/manager immediately if the locks malfunction.
- Use auxiliary locking devices on sliding glass doors and windows. Check with the landlord/manager first prior to installing security devices.
- All the security hardware in the world will not protect you if you open your door without checking to see who is on the other side of the door. It is very important to teach your children to always look through the peephole and only open the door to people they know. Never open your door to a stranger. If a stranger requests to use your phone for an emergency, offer to make the call for them while they remain outside the locked door.
- Both interior and exterior lighting is very important to building security. All walkways, doorways, hallways and parking lots should have sufficient illumination. If you notice a deficiency in the lighting, notify your landlord/manager immediately. Consider plugging in a living room light into a timer so you are not coming home to a dark home.
- Be aware of any and all special security features the complex has and know how to use them. Remember, if your complex has a secured gate, make sure the gate is kept closed and secured at all times—especially at night.
- Make sure your apartment number is present and visible during the hours of darkness on the front and rear of your individual apartment unit.
- If you suspect someone is trying to break into your apartment, call 9-1-1 immediately.
- Make sure all doors and windows are secured prior to leaving your home, even if you are only going to be gone to check on the laundry or get the mail.
- Never leave a hidden key outside your apartment.
- Don't leave expensive or tempting articles visible through your windows.
- If you arrive home and suspect a stranger is in your home, don't go inside. Go to a neighbor's or the manager's office and call 9-1-1.
- Never leave valuables in plain sight in your vehicle.
- Use car alarms, auxiliary-locking devices, fuel/ignition cut-off switches to prevent auto thefts and burglaries.
- Remember to report all suspicious people and activity to the Escondido Police Department at 760-839-4722, and report crimes in progress by calling 9-1-1.