Apt Complex Safety

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Ms. I, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I used to always think the higher floors to live are the safest, but honestly, I don't want to be climbing stairs a few times a day, especially if I have a handful of groceries, etc. & I never liked elevators, which are kind of scary too. So, I was thinking the quickest way to get into one's own apt is the best & I'll just put a deadbolt on the door, but as I'm thinking again, I think it's still best to live on a higher floor in which I'll take as many saftey precautions as possible anyway (door jam, window jam, etc) even though I live in a pretty safe city. The complexes in my area don't go that high (3rd floor at most) & it's no good living on the 2nd floor, then you have noise from the people above & below you.

    Any comments? Also, what other things do you do to stay as safe as possible within your apt & complex?
     
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  3. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    When I lived in an apartment, I lived on the second floor (top floor) and wouldn't have wanted it otherwise.

    I'd have a security system of some sort (even if only those stick-on alarms that sound when separated from one another).
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    FYI Many (most) apartment complexes won't allow you to change their locks or install new ones, including deadbolts. That's been in every lease I've ever signed.
     
  5. TennisPlayer

    TennisPlayer Cohort

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    Can you and your bf find a place incase you decide to move in together so you wouldnt have to move again in a hurry etc...I move in once we were engaged but you have been together a long time!
    :)

    I love the top floor of 3 floors because of the view and privacy up here when I have the blinds open etc.

    Crime can happen anywhere so I would look into self defense classes so you can know what to do for peace of mind, make sure you like the neighbors too incase you needed them for something youd feel comftable going to them, etc...I just trust my intuition somewhere....if it doesnt feel right then keep looking! I hope you find a place youll love!
     
  6. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    I've lived in a third floor apartment that was robbed when I was out of town and also in a first floor apartment where the people walking by my windows drove me crazy. I always felt like I had to keep the blinds closed. Also in that place, the apartments were exactly the same floor plan, so I'd hear my upstairs neighbors have their Saturday night "relations." Whole show. Bed squeaking. Footsteps. Toilet flush. Footsteps. Quiet. It was pretty humorous.

    As far as safety goes, put 2x4's or dowels in the window tracks so nobody can slide them open. Apartment management might not be flexible on door locks after you move in, so make sure you check the rules ahead of time. Also check at your hardware store. There might be something you can use that you don't need to screw in to install.

    Odds are that you'll be just fine. I would get to know who belongs in the area once you move in and not spend a lot of time roaming around in the dark late at night. Just be aware of your surroundings.
     
  7. Peachyness

    Peachyness Virtuoso

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    Walking up stairs isn't so bad and it's a good workout. I've always lived on the topmost floor.
     
  8. Kat53

    Kat53 Devotee

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    I will only live on the top floor. It's really not that bad ( besides the moving in part) to walk up and down the stairs.
     
  9. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Live on the top floor. Moving is a pain, but the groceries and shopping trips are just minor annoyances to unload everything. I lived on the fourth floor in college (no elevator) and it got to be nothing to zip up and down the stairs.

    Almost all of the apartments I lived in had a security system. My dad bought me something to brace against the door, and living upstairs I didn't really have fears of someone breaking in on the balconies, but I had the little pin that prevented the door from sliding open. They all had a deadbolt.

    My memory may be failing me, but I don't remember being scared for my safety.
     
  10. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Thanks guys. Yes, I'm thinking the pros far outweigh the cons w/ living on the upper floor, not to mention in certain complexes, you may have a vaulted ceiling that you wouldn't normally have on the lower level(s). My only little concern is a serious ankle injury I had a few yrs ago & I don't want more chances of (accidentally) reinjuring it & I'd really be worried when it's raining & having to go up/down stairs.

    True & I took a self defense classs eons ago in which I wouldn't mind taking karate even way before I planned to get an apt. But, w/ my ankle injury, I wouldn't want to hurt myself taking classes.

    In the house I'm living in now, we have a metal dowel in the sliding glass door plus a screw in the metal frame of the sliding glass door, so no one can slide it open.
     
  11. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I lived on the first floor. It wasn't my first choice but it was what was available. I never really had any problems except someone stole a package that was left out one time. It was really convenient.
     
  12. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    It might be a regional thing, but every apartment I have ever signed for said you CAN change the locks, but you have to give a key to the office/landlord. Probably depends on your state or area.
     
  13. chebrutta

    chebrutta Enthusiast

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    I lived on the 4th floor in the dorms - no elevators - and it was no problem, even with an old knee injury that likes to flare up every now and again.

    Two of my apartments have been townhouses; the other two have been on the second floor. Moving in is a pain, but the stairs really aren't a hassle in day-to-day life.
     
  14. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    I've lived in apartment complexes before and I prefer the highest floor all the time. I know carrying groceries is an issue but hey, this could be your workout or you could buy a few a day instead carrying a huge load at once.

    Noise is the best biggest one for me. I hate hearing people's footsteps, bathroom, kids running, TV, etc. I also want more privacy and not have to keep my blinds closed all the time. I've lived the happiest when I was on the highest level of the apartment complex but not so much when I was in the lower level or middle.
     
  15. yarnwoman

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    It is the same with rental homes. I am in the process of moving and cannot change teh locks on the new house.
     
  16. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    Our 1st apartment was on the first floor of a building and it had a security system--which sold us on the apartment. It was horrible because we knew everything that our neighbor above us or on each side of us said or did. We moved after the lease was up and found a second floor apartment in a better built building. The floor and interior walls had been sound proofed. It was great. We did not hear them and they did us. It was a great complex but it was an adult's only community so when our 1st was born, we had to move out. We moved into a townhouse. That was the worst. The electric bills were horrible because you had to keep the temperature so cold to be upstairs or it was too hot. On the warm nights we would sleep on our pull out couch and dd would sleep in her port-a-crib. After that we gave up on apartments and bought a plot of land and put a mobile home on it until we could afford to build.
     
  17. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I'm on the second floor now but with my own exterior entrance if that makes sense. I haven't had any problems at all!
     
  18. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I think the best security is common sense. I think we sometimes tend not to trust our instincts about danger, out of fear of looking silly or overly cautious. And that we sometimes get into trouble that way.

    You want a well lit entrance. You want to be in a position to get help from the time you leave your locked car until the time you enter your locked apartment. So an exterior staircase might be fine, as might a building with a doorman.

    But I think that generalizations might lead to a false sense of security.
     
  19. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Yes, we could change ours as well and did.
     
  20. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    I know many women who will only rent in apartments with a front security entrance. I love living on the first floor, but I have security windows and a dog with a big bark. Even if you live with someone, he/she will not always be home to scare away bad guys, so you have to pick a place you'll feel safe when you're alone at night.
     
  21. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Once I started moving into adult only buildings, I stopped worrying about which floor I lived on, although I would never consider living on the bottom floor.

    One time when I lived on the 2nd floor on a 3 floor building, the lady who lived below me always used to complain about me --- even when I wasn't home, lol.
     
  22. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    I live on the 2nd (which is the top) floor. It was an absolute pain to move in, and sometimes when I have a huge armful of groceries or whatnot I do think about being on the first floor. However, I think it's worth it. I sometimes sleep with my windows open, which I would never do on the first floor even though this is a safe area. I also don't have to worry about noise above me. This is a really safe area. I read the paper every day and I've never heard of a major crime in the year and a half I've been here. One christmas I meant to send a present to my parent's house since I would be there soon anyway, and accidently forgot to change the address and it got sent to my apartment. Two weeks later when I finally got back, it was still sitting on the doorstep. That doesn't mean I don't use common sense of course.
     
  23. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    I've almost always lived on the top floor (2nd or 3rd floor). I used Umovefree.com and they paid for the movers in exchange for a finder's fee from the apartment complex and then you pay 25 bucks for every flight over the 2nd floor at each building so I would end up paying about 50 bucks. I still keep all the doors and windows locked and there's big furniture in front of the large windows (ie, sofa and end tables in front of the picture windows in the living rooms, sitting bench in front of the picture window in my bedroom) so that if anyone where to climb in the odds are increased that they would trip and make a lot of noise/ hurt themselves over furniture you can't see from the outside while climbing up. The balcony has a regular door rather than a sliding glass and it has a deadbolt and a pop-lock. The front door has two deadbolts, one of which can only be accessed from inside of the apartment.

    I live in a safe neighborhood and all my windows face the main street. I also live close to the clubhouse (although far enough away that I can't hear noise from the pool). I feel pretty safe.
     
  24. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    Oh, I was going to add that the three times (in college where you're assigned an apartment style dorm) I did live on the bottom floor Apt 1 was broken into while I was away, Apt 2 I lived under an "active" couple, Apt 3 had paper thin floors and it sounded like they were bowling.
     
  25. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Working definition of a "safe neighborhood": one in which no crime has happened....yet.
     
  26. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    We had that problem in our 1st apartment, the girl above us had a headboard on her bed that moved with all "activity". There was a lot of "activity" going on.
     
  27. Proud2BATeacher

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    Sounds like present neighbour but I can put up with it knowing that it will only last 15 minutes max. and it rarely happens twice in one night:whistle:
     
  28. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    :lol:
     
  29. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I agree, but I'm sure not afraid of looking like a fool, paranoid, etc. if it means I'm safer. In my area, there's no bldgs w/ doormen.

    Well, I'll be living alone, so I'll be alone practically every night.
     
  30. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    HA! - I also live below an "active" couple right now. I am on the 2nd of 3 floors. It's my only complaint. :rolleyes: My building is set up so that the ground floor/first floor doesn't have any units on it and the second floor is really the first floor and so on....I've gotten used to the stairs.
     
  31. jteachette

    jteachette Comrade

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    For noise reasons, I would try to get a unit that is on the the end of the building, and on the top floor. You won't have the noise coming from above you, or on at least 2 sides, although you may hear some noise from the parking area, if it is outside.
    I've lived on the first floor in two apartments, one of which was broken into. The foot traffic in front of the windows drove me crazy.
    Oh, and none of the 3 places I lived in had a doorbell. Make sure that your apartment does. You don't want strangers knocking on your door because they have the wrong apartment.
     
  32. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I Live on the first floor
    My security system is the D O G system no need for B i t e upgrade the B A R K Alarm is sufficient.
     
  33. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    More or less, but in my previous apartment we had a few break ins around Christmas, but the neighborhood was still more or less a safe neighborhood. There's always a bad element that's willing to go in to a neighborhood and commit crime. When I say safe I mean that there isn't the "embedded" element of crime. For example, in the area I grew up in I could drive about ten minutes away and point out to you the drug houses or the motels in which the prostitutes operated. That was a neighborhood that had an embedded crime element. In a "safe" neighborhood, I would better explain it as susceptible to "transient" crime. People might pass through or come in and commit crimes of opportunity but again, it's not embedded.
     
  34. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    No, I understand what you mean.

    I just wanted to underscore the idea that "safe" is relative.

    Only one incident per year is a great record, unless of course YOU'RE the one.
     
  35. each1teach1

    each1teach1 Cohort

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    Lol. Right?! If you're the one, that's the worst neighborhood EVER!
     

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