‘Tis the Season for Safety

The holiday season is known for being ‘the most wonderful time of the year’. However, it’s also the time when security and safety measures need to be heightened to ensure that the season remains as such. As a property manager or owner, it’s your responsibility to take the proper precautions to ensure your tenants and residents both feel and stay safe within your property. Read below for three significant ways you can help them feel holly and jolly the whole holiday season long.

Ditch Any Dangerous Decorations

While festive lights, decorations, and evergreens enhance and warm a space, they also have the potential to cause damage as well if not set up and maintained correctly and with care.  Ensure that all holiday lights are UL-listed and approved for the spaces they’re in (i.e. indoor vs. outdoor). If possible, use LED lights, which are both safer and more energy-efficient. Be sure not to overload electrical outlets, and use surge protectors wherever needed. If you enjoy the classic, holiday look of candles in the windowsills, many companies now produce very realistic-looking, flameless candles, which eliminate the risks that fire-lit candles present. Additionally, there are many options of flameless fireplaces as well if you’d like to create a warmth in your lobby without the fire hazard. Regardless of whether or not you decide to have live fire decorations at your property, end-of-year is a great time to replace all of your fire extinguishers and the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

All of these tips are not only applicable to your common areas, but to your individual residents’ spaces as well. Create and distribute a tip sheet for residents with holiday safety guidelines to adhere to within their own homes for optimal safety this season.

Spot Suspicious Strangers

The holiday season is also peak time for burglaries, as many residents are often traveling. Additionally, burglars know it’s an easier time than ever to sneak into buildings disguised as delivery personnel, so it’s imperative to increase eyes and ears in your building to be on the lookout for suspicious behavior. Having a concierge or front desk attendant on watch 24/7 at this time of year is ideal to deflect anyone who may be looking to cause trouble. Take the extra safety step by re-enforcing to your front desk staff the importance of ensuring every single visitor shows proper ID, checks both in and out, and has validity for their visit. Additionally, encourage your residents and tenants to commit to a “neighborhood” watch, which will not only increase safety but also community in your building.

Protect Your Property

Be sure to monitor not only the inside of your building, but your outdoor surroundings as well. If you have a gate, take another safety step by staffing it with a security guard, who can take the same check-in measures as your front desk personnel. This will make your tenants and residents feel especially safe this season, and will provide a reinforced and added layer of security. If you have a garage or parking lot, having a roving or foot patrol monitoring activity is an excellent safety measure. Many thieves are on the lookout this time of the year for holiday shoppers with bags full of expensive, new purchases. Security personnel will significantly increase your residents’ and tenants’ risk of falling victim to a neighborhood Grinch!

Wishing you a safe and happy holiday season, from the entire Planned Companies team.

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This article was written by Jillian O’Connor (Marketing Communications Manager) for Planned Companies, the industry leaders in janitorial, maintenance, concierge/front desk, and security services in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Catering to both residential and commercial properties, we proudly provide services throughout New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC. For more information about our services, please visit our website at www.plannedcompanies.com or call us at 888-706-8600.