Condo Security From Leading Property Managers in Toronto: Dealing with Wanted and Unwanted Guests in Your Toronto Condo

Security is one of the key reasons many people turn to condominium living. One of the key functions that property managers in Toronto can provide is to ensure adequate security for all units by providing effective security measures including security guards, patrols and other security systems on the premises.

Good condo property management can go a long way toward keeping a community safe. This is particularly true in more urban areas, although residents in suburban areas are also as keenly interested in secure environments

  • Crime rates are actually 43% higher in small urban areas versus larger urban areas.
  • Break-ins are more likely to occur in small towns than in larger cities, as are violent crimes and property crimes.
  • Toronto has the lowest overall crime rate compared to any other city in Canada.

At least part of this success in fighting and preventing crime is attributable to community living spaces that have dedicated security personnel. These are highly important jobs, as they involve protecting people’s living spaces; a far more personal concern than the security involved in protecting retail or commercial buildings.

One of the major functions that these staff members, which condo property management companies in Toronto, supervise is the monitoring of guests in and out of the building. Ensuring that guests are checked in and properly authorized to access the building helps keep people safe by preventing entry by the general public. It also helps keep out unauthorized solicitors who might otherwise harass or annoy residents.

For residents, condo boards, and other people involved in the condo community, our eBook is a good resource for learning how to coordinate a community properly, including ensuring proper personnel for things like concierge, security and maintenance. It is available for download from the ICC® website and can be a good first step toward having better communication on security issues within your condo complex.

Dealing with Guests

If you are expecting guests, your condo board and property managers in Toronto likely have a posted policy to follow. Steps that you can take include:

  • Notifying security in advance that your guest is coming to visit, and providing security with the person’s name and vehicle information so security can authorize them to enter the building. Be sure to let security know the approximate time the guest is to arrive.
  • Ensuring guests know your unit number so that they can confirm they are welcome and in the right place.
  • Directing guests as to parking so that they stay in designated parking areas.
  • Abiding by the occupancy limits for your particular unit and not having more guests than permitted, particularly when there are fire codes with which you need to comply.
  • Ensuring guests are familiar with the noise restrictions so that they do not cause interference with other residents in the complex, particularly in common areas like hallways.
  • Ensuring both the residents and guests are aware of the rules of the condominium corporation so as not to be in contravention of any amenity use areas by guests.

Sometimes, you might get uninvited guests into your building or complex. With good condo property management companies in Toronto, this should be a rare occurrence, if it happens at all. However, when it does, you can take action and get assistance.

The first thing you should try to determine is if the uninvited guest poses a danger to you or other residents in the building. This may not always be obvious, but some “visitors” sneak in so that they can solicit residents, not necessarily intending to commit a crime. Solicitors can be a nuisance but are generally not dangerous.

In those instances, a quick call to the on-duty security guard or concierge, or to your property manager, should suffice. You should notify any unauthorized people that they should depart immediately or that they might get escorted out by security.

Solicitors delivering flyers can be quite a nuisance along with being a security concern.  For instance, door-to-door flyer delivery when you are not home or on vacation can alarm a potential intruder if the flyer has not been picked up.  If you notice flyers being delivered in your condominium, please notify the Property Manager right away so that a call may be made to the company delivering the flyers to cease and desist.

To eliminate such episodes in the future, the condo board should discuss the appropriate policy for visitors to the community. Should a confirmation phone call be required to ensure that guests are permitted? Or should guests need to be registered in advance in order to gain access? Many solicitors will provide some kind of false credentials in order to get into the building, which could only be identified or stopped with help and communication from residents.

Generally, these types of individuals can be weeded out by condo property management companies in Toronto who properly train their staff members to avoid giving out residents’ personal information. It is actually a requirement under the federal Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) that private organizations handle personal information with care and not release it if unauthorized to do so, or unless forced to do so by legal action.

condo-security2Sometimes, people gain entry to these buildings with the intent to commit crimes. When this occurs, you should contact the local authorities as soon as possible before involving your property managers in Toronto. After you have called the police, then it is appropriate to notify on-site security personnel to ensure the police will have proper access to the building to stop the crime in progress.

If you end up facing an intruder in your condo, it can be a distressing experience. After you have safely gotten out of the situation by working with the appropriate authorities, you should explore legal options for charging the intruder with trespassing and breaking and entering. You should also consider exploring whether your condo’s safety procedures need some updating, and might want to consult with a security expert to get an evaluation.

Security continues to be a big concern for people who live in condos in Toronto, and proper handling of guests can go a long way toward keeping people safe. In fact, security was ranked as the most important factor in a condo building by 94% of participants in a TD Canada Trust poll, coming out ahead of energy efficiency (92%) and parking concerns (87%).

Please remember that security measures in a condominium are not 100% failsafe…… A wise old man once told me that locks were meant to keep out honest people…..

If you feel your current condo living situation does not provide you or your family with adequate security, it is a good idea to take the issue up with your condo board and propose new procedures, rules, and regulations. ICC® stands ready to help residents and condo boards who want to address their security concerns and can provide guidance and advice on best practices to follow.

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