How To Protect Vacant Property From Thieves

Q: Gerald, I just bought my first vacant rehab property. How should I protect the property from thieves while I do the renovation? Phil, Mahwah, NJ

A: That’s a good question, Phil. What I’m going to do right now is give you 3 ways to protect a vacant property:

Alarms: Install an electronic alarm security system. Alarms will deter individuals from attempting to enter your building and will quickly alert authorities if someone does break in.

Live Security: this can be a security company that patrols the area around your property or an intimidating Dog you put in the property or having someone like a handyman live temporarily in the property.

Lighting: Motion-activated lights and general lighting can help protect vacant property. Keeping entryways and other areas around the building well-lit deters people from attempting to enter a building. Motion-activated lights are a good deterrent because they will only turn on when someone gets too close to the building and will often scare off potential criminals.

Thanks for your question, Phil–congratulations on buying your first rehab property–good luck.

For more real estate tips and information, visit my blog at