Mark Mahaffey
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  1. The criminal lives there.
  2. They visit friends there.
  3. They come to the property to commit crimes.

The Crime Free Multi-Housing Program (CFMH) addresses all these possibilities and by implementing the principles of the program property managers not only reduce the likelihood of crime, they also reduce the number of visitors who come to the property with criminal intent.

The use of CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) has been used to combat crime that might occur in parking lots, or common areas and when used in conjunction with CFMH programs along with the cooperation of residents, law enforcement, and property managers all working together, the outlook for success is extremely high.

Crime Free Multi-Housing Program

CFMH was started in 1992 and has been actively and productively been used by property owners, managers and municipalities throughout the United States and Canada. CFMH is comprised of a partnership of law enforcement, property managers and tenants all working together that have shown to produce significant results in the reduction of crime.

Multi-Family properties provide unique challenges to law enforcement as well as property managers because they have a tendency to be more transient than single family home communities. Thus the “buy in” that residents and tenants have is not as strong which promotes apathy towards the community and the desire to confront crime.

How to Become CFMH Certified

  1. Training: after completion of the 8 hour training class each participant will receive the CFMH certificate signed by law enforcement officials and the course instructor. This should be displayed in the leasing or management office which will show that the property management takes crime seriously, but also show prospective residents that any illegal activity will not be tolerated. The backbone of the program is the implementation of the Crime Free Lease  Addendum or Crime Free HOA Membership Addendum which basically spells out to any prospective resident that any criminal or illegal behavior will not be tolerated and if violated could mean the expulsion of the resident and or family members. Although this is easier implemented for rentals a similar addendum could be included in the association rules that are signed during escrow and would extend to family members or anyone they may rent there property to in the future. It is best to consult an attorney because each state and municipality has there own rules and regulations and property rights.  2)
  2. CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) Inspection: CPTED principles can be used to to Detect, Deny, Delay, Deter, crime by using physical security devices and physiological signals based on the design of the “built” environment and will make an area less vulnerable to crime. A law enforcement crime prevention specialist will conduct an inspection of the property for physical security as well as general appearance.
  3. Safety Social or Neighborhood Watch Meeting: a crime prevention specialist from your local law enforcement agency will meet with tenants and residents to go over safety rules and general crime prevention tips. This will complete the certification process and will allow the community to display the CFMH & CPTED certifications and signs and advertising privileges associated with these programs that have received national and international attention.