We all want our homes and communities to be safe. A high pressure is placed upon the shoulders of the HOA board to promote the security and safety of the neighborhood. Although the level to which the board is responsible for the safety of the community is outlined in the governing documents, there are a few steps that can be taken to ensure you are doing your utmost to prevent crime from occurring.
There are so many benefits to having a well-lit exterior. Not only does nighttime lighting help create a welcoming and beautiful atmosphere and prevent falls and injuries, lighting can go a long way in preventing crime. Most criminals tend to keep to the shadows when committing a crime, and will be quick to avoid areas that have sufficient lighting at night. If a crime is committed in a well-lit area, it is likely that it will be seen by someone and reported right away.
Many crimes tend to take place in areas that are run down, not cared for, dirty, or damaged. If your community is well-maintained with a fresh coat of paint, beautiful lawns, and up-to-date buildings, criminals will be deterred from the area. A beautiful community communicates that people care for the area, their homes, and the residents.
Encourage Residents to Lock Homes and Vehicles
Most crimes are committed simply because it was a convenient crime to commit. Locking a vehicle or home may provide enough discouragement to keep a criminal from breaking into the property. Thieves target unlocked vehicles because they can enter and steal property very quickly. It is up to the board to routinely remind residents to lock their homes and vehicles, and to never leave their keys in their car.
Organize Neighborhood Watch
If crime is a problem in your community, you can consider joining forces with Neighborhood Watch in your area. Setting up a watch can not only make the community safer, it can help bring neighbors together as they strive to make the community a better place to live. The knowledge that homeowners are on the lookout for crime will keep criminals at bay.
Having residents on your side as you attempt to fight crime in your neighborhood can be your strongest asset. It is a good idea to remind residents that they should report anything suspicious to local police, even if it seems like an insignificant thing. All residents should be supplied with a list of phone numbers to call in both emergency and non-emergency situations.
Build a Strong Community
Strong and neighborly communities will always be the best at keeping crime away from their neighborhoods. Neighbors who care for each other will be on the lookout for the well-being of those around them. HOAs should always do what they can to build tight-knit neighborhoods and to help homeowners get to know each other.
A safe and comfortable community should be a top priority for HOA boards. By following these steps, you can go a long way in preventing crime in your homeowners association.