Residents at an ESP property enjoy a party with their neighborhood police officer.
The Enhanced Safety Properties (ESP) Program is designed to encourage and support landlords and property managers to take measures to keep their properties safe and livable. ESP properties see a dramatic decrease in crime. Residents feel safer and more secure, and property managers report a decrease in problem activities on the property. Originally piloted in North Portland with great success, ESP is now operational city-wide with over ten thousand households involved. Download a handout about the program here.
The program has three certification components. Property owners and their managers certified in all three components may lease and display the ESP signs and use the ESP logo in their for-rent advertising, and receive notification when police activity occurs on the property. Completion of the three components is usually done within 12 months.
The three components of certification are:
Landlord Training Component: All people involved in the day-to-day management of a property must complete the free, day-long Landlord Training Program offered by the City of Portland. This program has been proven to be effective in educating landlords and property managers in techniques to keep criminal activity off their property. For information about upcoming Landlord Trainings, click here.
CPTED (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) Component: ESP requires participants to meet minimum management and CPTED standards. Employees are screened for criminal history as are rental applicants who will also have their credit and rental history checked. Landlords must also use a lease addendum addressing criminal activity, and sign a trespass agreement with the Portland Police Bureau. CPTED standards include proper lighting, landscaping, locks, door and window security devices as specified in the participation agreement. To see the form that Crime Prevention Coordinators use to assess properties, click here.
Resident Crime Prevention Training Component: Landlords are required to share the concepts of crime prevention strategies with the residents. Larger complexes hold a resident meeting with a representative from the Crime Prevention Program and the Portland Police Bureau to provide Neighborhood/Apartment Watch training. In very small complexes or single family rentals, the owners are to provide tenants with crime prevention information packets and work with Crime Prevention to establish a Neighborhood Watch. The residents also benefit from learning how to recognize and report crime; reduce their risk of becoming crime victims. For more information about Neighborhood Watch, click here.
Maintaining Program Membership: The ESP Program maintains the right to revoke a membership in the event that a property falls below the required minimum standards. This could be due to management practices inconsistent with the program's intent despite attempts on the part of the ESP program to encourage the owner to bring his/her property into compliance. Some examples would be the property changing hands and the new management fails to take the Landlord training within 6 months of hiring; the property falls below the minimum CPTED requirements; the landlord/manager fails to hold the required resident meetings; the landlord/manager violates the civil rights of the residents or applicants. A property whose membership is revoked will have their signs removed and not be allowed to use the ESP logo.
To find out more about the Enhanced Safety Properties Program contact your Crime Prevention Coordinator.