Published June 19th, 2024

How to protect your vacation home

Written by Level Home Staff

9 Ways to protect & secure your vacation rental property

Even with a vacation rental, property management is crucial for maintaining value, ensuring guest satisfaction, and maximizing rental income. It's also essential to ensure the safety and security of your vacation rental to protect guests and property, prevent liability issues, and enhance the property's reputation.

Implementing security measures, such as advanced locks and regular safety checks, can provide peace of mind to both owners and guests, leading to positive reviews and repeat bookings. Read on to learn about how you can better protect your investment.

1. Install smart locks

For owners, smart locks offer the convenience of managing access without physical keys, eliminating the risks associated with lost or copied keys. The flexibility to change access codes easily between guests and the ability to view a log of entry times can also play an important role in the overall security of your vacation rental, ensuring only authorized individuals can enter the property.

Renters benefit from the seamless check-in process, as they can access the property without waiting for a key handover, enhancing their overall experience. A better experience typically means better reviews, boosting your listing.

Learn more about the benefits of smart locks for short-term rentals.

2. Use surveillance cameras

Monitoring your vacation rental property can help with promptly addressing security issues, ensuring guest safety, and managing maintenance needs efficiently. However, it’s important to keep in mind that guests have a right to privacy. Property owners must inform guests about surveillance, ensure cameras do not infringe on privacy rights, and comply with local laws regarding video recording and data storage. Security cameras can be strategically placed at entry points, common areas, and exterior spaces while avoiding private areas like bedrooms and bathrooms.

3. Secure windows and doors

There are measures you can take to secure doors and windows in your vacation rental that will provide peace of mind, reduce the likelihood of costly repairs and increase the rental's attractiveness to security-conscious renters.

  • Upgrade to Deadbolt Locks: Use high-quality deadbolt locks on all exterior doors for added strength.

  • Use Security Bars: Place security bars on sliding doors and ground-floor windows to deter break-ins.

  • Add Window Locks: Ensure all windows have sturdy locks that are regularly checked and maintained.

  • Reinforce Door Hinges: Use long screws and strong hinges to make doors more resistant to kicking or prying.

4. Install a security system

Having a comprehensive security system offers numerous advantages, such as deterring potential intruders, providing real-time alerts, and ensuring swift emergency response. When selecting a security system, look for features like alarms, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and smart locks to provide layered protection. Owners can opt for self or professional monitoring, with the latter offering added assurance with expert handling of security breaches.

5. Implement outdoor lighting

Proper lighting can deter potential intruders by eliminating dark areas where they might hide, making suspicious activity more visible to neighbors and passersby. Motion-activated lights are highly recommended as they can startle and discourage trespassers while conserving energy. Strategically place these lights around entry points, walkways, and dark corners of the property to ensure comprehensive illumination and maximize security coverage. As a bonus, having automatic lights helps keep your guests safe and prevent injuries when they move about the property after dark.

6. Conduct regular property maintenance

Routine inspections and maintenance are crucial for ensuring the continued safety and security of a vacation rental, as they help identify and address potential issues before they escalate. A regular checklist should include inspecting locks, windows, alarms, security cameras, and lighting systems to ensure they are all functioning properly. Consistent maintenance not only helps prevent security breaches but also contributes to the overall safety of the property by keeping everything in proper working order.

7. Develop a guest safety guide

Creating a guide with safety instructions for guests can help them be well-informed and prepared in case of emergencies. This guide should include emergency contacts, clear instructions for using security systems, and local emergency procedures such as evacuation routes and nearby medical facilities. Educating guests about property safety not only enhances their sense of security and comfort but also helps them respond effectively in emergencies, potentially preventing accidents and ensuring a smoother, more enjoyable stay.

8. Screen your guests

Thorough guest screening is vital to prevent issues such as property damage, disturbances, or security breaches, ensuring a safe and pleasant environment for all guests. Utilizing tools and platforms like identity verification services, background checks, and guest reviews on booking sites can help screen guests effectively. Establishing trust through clear communication, setting explicit house rules, and requiring security deposits further enhances property safety and fosters a respectful relationship between vacation rental hosts and guests.

9. Insure your property

Insurance options for vacation rentals typically include property insurance, liability coverage, and loss of income protection. When choosing a policy, look for coverage that includes protection against damages caused by guests, natural disasters, theft, and liability for injuries occurring on the property. Comprehensive insurance coverage provides peace of mind by safeguarding against financial losses, ensuring that both the rental property and guests are protected in various scenarios.


Implementing safety measures can be helpful for vacation rental property owners to safeguard their investments, ensure guest satisfaction, and mitigate potential risks. By taking proactive steps such as installing security systems, conducting routine inspections, and educating guests, property owners can create a secure and welcoming environment.

If you're a property owner or manager of an apartment building, learn about the benefits of investing in smart technology for your apartment rentals too.