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Should Your HOA Hire a Security Officer?

Stock photograph of new apartments in downtown Phoenix Arizona USA on a sunny day.Homeowners’ associations are designed to help make your community more appealing to keep property value high. For this reason, security officers are a perfect fit for HOAs, so should your association consider hiring one? If you want to better protect your community and neighbors, check out these facts you should know about hiring a security officer for your HOA.

Can the HOA Afford a Security Officer?

The cost of hiring a security officer for the community will likely come from the HOA funds, which are collected each month by the members of the HOA (anyone who lives in the neighborhood). HOA funds are usually separated into two categories: common expenses and the reserve fund. Common expenses include landscaping for common areas and hiring a security officer.

However, if you only need a security officer for a single event, such as a neighborhood block party, the funds for the security officer will probably come from the reserve fund, which is commonly used for emergencies and uncommon charges (like a new roof for the clubhouse).

Either way, you need to ensure the current HOA dues cover the expense. If not, you may have to change how you allocate the money or increase monthly dues, which homeowners may not like. Depending on the guidelines of the HOA, vote may not even be necessary before the dues can be increased.

Does the Property Have Lots of Common Areas?

Depending on your needs, a security officer can stay in one place or monitor the area. Of course, the security officer will ensure that no funny business happens on private property, such as a trespasser who breaks into your neighbor’s house.

However, security officers are particularly important if you have lots of common areas. Common areas in HOAs often include clubhouses, pools, parks, or lakes. These areas may attract potential criminals, especially if people who don’t live in the community can access the neighborhood.

In these common areas, security officers can also help better control traffic and parking. For example, if people from outside the community start invading the common areas, security officers can spot the cars that don’t belong and take action to stop them from using the HOA facilities for which they don’t pay.

Can You Find Lots of Places to Hide?

Some neighborhoods are more open than others, such as a condo, which isn’t going to have many dark places to hide outside. However, if the property contains lots of places to hide, such as shadows, shrubbery, and areas out of sight, criminals have a better time sneaking around and breaking into homes. A security officer can help detour this by simply being in the neighborhood and patrolling the area.

In some areas, you may want to add extra lighting, which will enable you to see criminals, and visibility alone will help convince criminals to go elsewhere. Trimming bushes and trees will also help with visibility.

It’s also a good idea to install CCTV cameras throughout the neighborhood to catch anything the security officer misses. However, while the cameras may make some criminals think again, they won’t detour all criminals, so it’s best to have a security officer monitoring the CCTV cameras at all times. This gives them the chance to stop the crime as it happens so homeowners don’t have to even deal with police or theft.

With a security officer, your neighborhood’s security skyrockets, and a safe community attracts other potential homebuyers. If you are ready to better protect your HOA and neighborhood, contact us today at Trident Security to find out how we can help provide you with security and safety when you’re home.

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