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Vacent Property, Unoccupied, Security, Commercial Security, Security Services, Coronavirus, Vacant, Manned Guard, Concierge Security, Mobile Patrols

What are the 5 biggest risks of leaving your commercial property vacant?

The current Coronavirus pandemic has affected thousands of businesses within Wales and the UK, causing businesses to continue their operations from home or having to furlough their staff – leaving commercial properties empty and easy targets for criminals.

Whilst having employees working from home is helping the nation keep moving and maintain productivity, leaving your commercial property empty could leave you at risk of crime, damage to your property or accidents – all of which could cost you money and a massive headache.

We understand that the safety of your staff is your priority right now, but you still want a property that they can go back to when the pandemic is over, and restrictions have lifted. So, to ensure that your property is kept safe whilst your employees are working remotely, here are 5 of the biggest risks that you can avoid.

Crime and Vandalism

For criminals, an empty property is a very attractive target, even if you’ve emptied out valuable assets. However, do not underestimate criminals who will go to extreme lengths to make quick cash. Wiring containing high valued metals, copper piping and radiators all have considerable value and most criminals won’t think twice about tearing your premises apart and selling every last bit of it for scrap. And it’s not just criminals that target buildings for their scrap value that you have to look out for. Vandals and delinquents can also be attracted by an empty property and can easily cause thousands of pounds worth of damages, with you having to pay for the repair work and clean up.

How to protect your property:

There are a number of ways you can dissuade criminals from targeting your premises whilst it lays empty.

  • Ensure that all access points such as emergency exits and entry points are fitted with looks or door reinforcements.
  • If you know your property is to be vacant for a large period of time, it may wise to consider boarding up the windows and doors.
  • Invest in professional security services such as mobile patrol security, manned guards, CCTV systems and alarm response services. Having a strong security presence at your property can easily dissuade criminals from targeting your premises and risking them getting caught.

Squatters

With homelessness within our cities on the increase, many will look too empty properties to find shelter from the elements. And with the employees working from home, your property could be the perfect target. Squatting refers to the practice of occupying or living in an empty or abandoned property without the permission or knowledge of the owner. Even though squatting in residential property was deemed illegal in 2012, the laws surrounding squatting in commercial properties is a bit more complicated in the eyes of the law.

According to GOV.UK being on someone’s non-residential property without their permission isn’t a criminal offence but a civil offence – meaning property owners must obtain a court order and issue claim against the squatters for eviction.  However, if other crimes such as the theft, damage or the using of utilities are committed this could help speed up the process and result in the arrest of the squatters.

How to protect your property:

  • Ensure your property is properly secure and alarmed.
  • Have yourself or security guard perform regular checks on your building for signs of forced entry.
  • Turn off/disconnect utilities.
  • Hire a 24/7 security guard to man the property and deter any entry.
  • Consider mobile patrol services to check on the property and respond to any alarm call outs and suspicious activity.

Fire or Water damage

Whether caused by accident or intentionally done, fire and flooding can cause thousands of pounds worth of damage, leaving you to foot the repair bills and preventing your business or offices from reopening when you can.

With the winter month turning colder, many properties with older water systems are at greater risk of water pipes bursting and causing damage. However, burst pipes don’t mean a huge burst causing gallons of water to flood an office or business. When water freezes it expands, causing pipes to crack or come loose at joints and when the temperature increases, water can easily leak out of these damaged areas. And if your property is unoccupied, it could be days or weeks before anyone notices that there is a leak. And the longer the leak is left undiscovered and dealt with, the more damage and the bigger the repair bill will be.

Fire is the most destructive and if the fire is not tackled quick enough, it could lead to you losing your property and whatever other assets you have inside. Although some fire damages are caused accidentally (faulty wiring /electrics) most are caused by arson attacks and for arsonists, an empty property is a perfect target. Within the UK there are around 60 fires a day occurring in or near vacant or abandoned properties in the UK.

How to protect your property:

  • If your property is vacant for a long period of time, turn off your water supply at the mains.
  • To avoid your pipes freezing during the winter months, put your boiler system on a timer.
  • Hire a professional mobile patrol to conduct patrols within your business to check of any leaks or burst pipes.
  • Consider outsourcing your key holding services, so your property is accessible 24/7 to make essential repairs.

To protect from fire:

  • Check that your property follows fire regulations and ensure that your insurance covers fire damage and is valid.
  • Perform regular fire alarm tests to ensure it is working correctly and is able to detect any fires and smoke.

Loss of assets

Some businesses who have vacated their premise for a long period of time would have either removed or stored much of their assets away from prying eyes. However, if you’ve taken the decision to leave your property vacant for a short period of time and left valuable assets out on display, then you are going to attract criminals looking to make quick cash. However, if you’re a larger business, removing assets from your property isn’t a viable option especially if you are looking to quickly bring your employees back to work.

How to protect your assets:

  • Ensure that all doors and windows leading to and within office spaces/work areas are closed and secured.
  • Audit all assets that are within your premises before leaving and perform another when returning to ensure nothing has been taken.
  • Register or mark assets with a UV pen so they can be returned if stolen.
  • Set your alarm systems to ensure any break-ins are detected
  • Consider investing in alarm response services to ensure that every alarm activation is thoroughly investigated and resolves, minimising hassles and danger for you and your employees.

Invalid insurance

With the recent government announcements for employees to work from home once again in Wales, it can be easy to assume that your insurance provides cover for your property if it is vacant for a large period of time. But this isn’t always the case and if your property has been a target for criminal activity whilst vacant, it could see your insurance not paying out on repairs.

Before you leave your property, you should notify your insurance provider of your decision and check the details in your policy surrounding the vacating of your property for long periods of time. Depending on the policy you have, your insurance may be reduced or become invalid if your property has been vacant for a long period of time and classified as unoccupied (typically after 30-45 consecutive days). As empty buildings are at greater risk of crime, damage, and decay, you may need to purchase further unoccupied insurance to ensure that your premises and its contents are protected.

How to protect your property

  • Consult with your insurance provider and check how long your property can remain unoccupied before the insurance is reduced or becomes invalid.
  • If you surpass their limit, ensure you update your cover.

What else can you do to protect your property?

Although we have highlighted some suggestions that you can implement yourself, you can take further steps to protect your building. And that is investing in a reliable, experienced and professional security provider such as A&R Security Services.

Here at A&R Security Services we service a large number of commercial properties within South Wales and offer a range of effective security services such as:

  • 24/7 Concierge security
  • Manned Guard Security
  • Mobile patrols services
  • Key holding
  • Alarm Response Services
  • And much more

To learn more about our professional security services give our friendly team a call on 01656 713950 or visit our website.

Concierge Security, Concierge Security Services, Security Services,Security, A&R Security Services

Concierge Security: 5 reasons why you should have it

Whether you are a corporate building, a lavish hotel in the heart of the city centre or a manufacturing unit based in outskirts, they all need one thing. Security. In Swansea, there are hundreds of security providers offering a range of security services that will protect your business including concierge security.

But what is concierge security we hear you ask?
Concierge Security acts as another form of receptionist where they greet visitors to your building, take messages and answer any queries. But Concierge security staff also have the ability to control access to your building (whether that is internal or external) monitor CCTV, quickly respond to any emergency situations and apprehend criminals targeting your business.

So, what are the 5 reasons why you should have concierge security?

Instant protection

There are many benefits to having concierge security and one of the main benefits of having concierge security is instant support in terms of safety and patrols.  Not only can concierge monitor CCTV and raise alarms should there be anything threatening the safety of your business, but they also have the correct skills and training to handle and diffuse potential criminal situations.

By hiring concierge security for your business, you will have someone who is watching for any potential threats to your business. Giving you peace of mind that you can leave your premises lone for long periods of time.

Fully Vetted and Trained Staff

When looking for concierge security it is important to hire fully vetted, licensed and trained staff to protect your business. All of our staff are employed directly by us and are fully vetted by ourselves, ensuring that they are legally allowed to work within specific buildings and areas and are trained to the highest of standards.

Employing your own security staff can be tricky and a bit headache-inducing so letting a professional security provider that is able to fully vet and train their own staff, leaving you more time to focus on running your business and us taking care of the security.

It’ll save you money

We all like to save a bit of money where we can but outsourcing your concierge security can do the same. As you only need to pay for one service you don’t have to deal with pay, uniform, training and vetting costs. Outsourcing your concierge means you pay for specific staff as and when you need them and what’s great about outsourcing your concierge to us, you only have to pay for the services you want (no hidden costs or price hikes).

5-star customer service

You want to give your customers and visitors a face that they can trust when they walk into your building. Having concierge stationed by your reception will allow them to greet clients and visitors to your business and answer any queries or concerns that they may have.

Alongside providing clients and visitors with 5-star customer service, they can ensure that they receive all the regular protection they need. Concierge security can arrange emergency procedures and can ensure that any incidents are fully logged and taken care of.

Clients and visitors so to your business will find concierge a wealth of knowledge and information, as well as help. They will make sure that your business is fully protected and that your guests receive full answers to their burning questions.

Takes the hassle off your hands

When thinking about concierge security for your business it can be very tempting to employ security staff yourself but with further inspection, it can be both timeconsuming and expensive. And think about the other hassle you need to deal with such as welcoming and checking in guests, making sure security protocols are being adhered to.

So, outsourcing your concierge security is a bit of a no brainer. You won’t have to worry about vetting or checking anyone that comes or goes from your business. Our professional security staff can be set to work in establishing a firm but friendly face at the front of your business. They’ll follow your security protocols and will make sure that your CCTV and other security measures are monitored and analysed.

Running a business can take up a lot of your time and you may not have thought or considered concierge security for your business, but there are plenty of reasons why it can benefit you and your business in the long run.

Rather than having to focus on employing your own security staff and training them, why not look at hiring concierge security from a security provider that you can fully trust.

A&R Security provides a wide range of security services that have benefited many businesses across South Wales and the South West. If you are considering Concierge Security for your business visit our website or call us on 01656 713950 for a free non-obligation quote.

Metal thefts, metal theft, chruch, rail, construction, Security, Services, A&R Security Services

Are metal thefts on the rise again?

Metal thefts have a severe impact on a multitude of industries and services within England and Wales.

In 2017 the UK government reported saying that with the introduction of the Scrap Metal Dealers Act, it found that the number of metal thefts fell by more than three quarters in 4 years.

However, with the change in markets and the increase in metal prices, many historical properties, memorials and monuments, services and industries are being targeted.

In recent times Network Rail has reported an 85% increase in the theft of live cables, leading to 950 hours of delay and affecting more than 7,000 journeys across England and Wales. Alongside rail services, Churches across England and Wales have seen an increase in metal thefts, with their lead roofs being stripped and sold for scrap. One striking example was when 20 tonnes of lead – the entire roof – was stolen from All Saints’ Church in Houghton Conquest, Bedfordshire last October. It is estimated that at the prices then it might bring the thieves £25,000 but will cost the church £400,000 to replace.

Although many properties and services are being targeted for their valuable metals there are ways to prevent criminals from stealing.

SelectaDNA ‘Grease’

This product has been developed so that it can be painted onto metals such as Zinc, Copper and Lead. If a thief handles any metals with this grease painted on them, it can transfer onto their hand or cloths and become very difficult to remove – linking them to the crime. The grease is also UV reactive and has a unique DNA signature that can be easily traced.

Painting this specially designed grease makes metals ‘Hot property’ and no one would want to go near them, leading to the prices of metal on the open market to fall.

Install CCTV

CCTV cameras are an effective deterrent against criminals as they do not want to be recognised when committing a crime. When installing CCTV make sure that they are high up and in areas where they cannot be tampered with or damaged.

If you can, hire manned guards during unsociable hours to monitor CCTV activity on your property as they can quickly respond and notify you and the police of any suspicious activity

Security Lighting

Security lighting comes in a vast range of sizes and models but is an effective deterrent (especially when used alongside CCTV Cameras). Security lights can be triggered by movement and can light up anyone that may be attempting to steal any metals.

When installing Security lighting, make sure that they are in a high are and cables are out of reach or are buried within floors or walls so that they cannot be damaged or tampered with.

Remove bushes and other hiding places

Bushes may look pretty but they can make ideal hiding places for criminals that are looking to steal valuable metal. If you have bushes on your property, make sure that they aren’t located close to your building and are at an ideal distance that makes spotting criminals easier.

Remove bins and ladders

Any property that you visit will have large wheelie bins and ladders. When closing your business or property down for the evening, make sure that they are locked away or moved where they cannot be reached and used to get on top of your roof.

Mobile Patrol and Manned Guard Security

Although this may be a more drastic measure for smaller businesses or churches, for larger businesses and construction sites that deal with metal mobile patrols and manned guards are an effective way to deter criminals and protect your property

Manned Guards

Manned guards are an effective deterrent against criminal activity. Some businesses see a lot of activity in and out of their business and it can be difficult to keep track of everyone.

Manned guards can be stationed close to main entrances, checking vehicles and personal coming in and out of your property. They can also conduct monitoring duties where they can monitor CCTV cameras for any suspicious activity within the property and quickly respond.

Manned guards can also restrict the number of people or vehicles on your site at a certain time during the day, making it easier for them to monitor who is on your site but also their activity.

Mobile Patrols

Mobile Patrols can conduct perimeter patrols around your property either by foot or by branded vehicles. Mobile patrols can be conducted at regular or at irregular intervals, making them less predictable to criminals who may be watching your property.

If mobile patrols are away from your property and there is a disturbance, they can quickly respond and check for any suspicious activity or persons within your property.

A&R Security Services can provide professional security solutions to businesses across South Wales. To see further information about our security services visit our website or to arrange a meeting call us on 01656 713950

Concierge Security, Security, Hotel, A&R Security Services

What is Concierge Security?

Whether you visit a hotel or a large corporate building in Cardiff, you will see someone on the reception desk welcoming visitors and answering queries. However, with recent events making businesses such as these step up their security, many are investing in concierge or Front of house Security services.

But if you are looking to invest in Concierge Security, do you know what it is?

Here we look at what concierge security is and what the service entails.

What is Concierge Security?

Concierge Security acts as another form of reception where they greet visitors to your building, take messages and answer any queries. But Concierge security staff also have the ability to control access to your building (whether that is internal or external) monitor CCTV and quickly responding to any emergency situations.

What services does Concierge Security provide?

Control access to your building

If your business deals with a lot of sensitive information or expensive equipment, you want to keep unauthorised personal out. Concierge security guards can check who is coming into your building and issue them key cards or fobs that only allow them into certain parts of your building. If your building can only be accessed with a key code, card or fob from the outside and visitors are there to see someone within your building, they can check and grant access when approved and have them sign a visitors log.

Monitor CCTV

Many businesses have CCTV within their building but during the evening it can difficult to arrange a member of staff to monitor CCTV.

Concierge Security guards can monitor CCTV cameras throughout the day and evening, ensuring that anyone acting suspiciously or trying to break into your building are quickly responded too and apprehended. Alongside looking out for suspicious activity within your building, concierge security guards can monitor CCTV for any maintenance issues and quickly notify your facilities management team.

Deal with emergencies

Whether its someone seriously hurt or a fire alarm going off, it important to have someone who knows how do deal with an emergency in a professional manner. Concierge Security guards are fully trained to deal with any kind of emergency, whether that is administering first aid to a visitor or member of staff, calmly instructing staff and visitors to exit the building in a calm manner if there is a fire or to quickly apprehend a criminal and escort them from the premises.

Carry out Health & Safety checks

Health and safety should be a top priority when wanting to ensure the safety of your staff and visitors. Concierge security guards can carry out health and safety check within your building, ensuring that there the correct H&S procedures are being followed and report any maintenance issues.

 

If you are looking for concierge services for your business, then speak to A&R Security Services. We ensure that we provide a tailored service that suits your needs and our concierge security guards provide visitors and staff 5-star customer service. If you wish to find out more about our concierge security services, then visit our website or give us a call on 01656 713950