Benefits of HOA and Community License Plate Readers

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Did you know that about 70% of crimes committed in the United States involve the use of a vehicle? It’s no wonder then that more than 400,000 homeowners associations (HOAs) have already installed automated license plate readers for their gated community. After all, only about 18% of property crime ever gets solved.

If your HOA is manually tracking vehicles entering and exiting your neighborhood, this article makes a case for installing visitor license plate cameras now. Read on to find out why.

What is Automated License Plate Recognition? 

license plate recognition
license plate recognition

Residential Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPR) is a smart technology that automatically records vehicle license plates using high-speed cameras. Here’s the exact process of what it does when a car enters or exits your community:

  1. A high-speed camera takes photos or footage of the vehicle along with the license plate. 
  2. The software translates the image into alphanumeric machine-readable text.
  3. The software analyzes the captured information.

This information is stored in the cloud, along with the time and date the image or video was taken. Permission-based access will allow managers and board members to access the data and report on the data for forensics should an incident occur.

Proptia LPR live monitor
Proptia LPR live monitor

Types of License Plate Readers

There are two types of license plate readers: the mobile license plate reader and the stationary license plate reader.

Mobile License Plate Reader

A mobile license plate reader is typically attached to a vehicle. Patrolling law enforcement often uses these readers to collect license plate information of every car that drives by to determine if a license plate has an existing law violation. Here, cameras are installed at the front, side, and rear of the vehicle so the system can identify more license plates.

Stationary License Plate Reader

A stationary license plate reader, on the other hand, is attached to a single location. Law enforcers usually have these at traffic lights, while gated communities install them at the entrance and exit points, parking areas, and street poles.

Advantages of Installing License Plate Cameras in Your HOA

residential license plate recognition

Now that you know how it works, you might still be wondering why your HOA needs it. Well, an HOA license plate recognition system doesn’t just store your visitor information–it also has other advantages.

1. A Method of Access

Many HOAs are embracing License Plate Recognition (LPR) as a streamlined approach to access management. Departing from traditional methods like transponders, fobs, and barcodes, communities are adopting ‘LPR as a Credential.’ With this innovative system, residents can effortlessly gain access using their authorized license plates. As a vehicle enters the camera frame, the system reads the plate, triggering a relay to open the gate for the vehicle. Simultaneously, the system captures detailed vehicle information, including a clear image, make, model, color, and style. This secure and user-friendly method has become a preferred way to handle visitor access as well. For residents utilizing Proptia’s visitor management, adding a visitor, assigning a place, and inputting a plate number ensures seamless entry for the visitor as long as the pass is valid—eliminating the need to fumble with keypads, call boxes, or guards.

2. 24/7 Security

Technology has not only made our lives better, but it has also made thieves smarter. So, having physical staff to guard your community in various shifting schedules will no longer suffice. You must upgrade to smart technology like automated license plate recognition.

Installing this means your community will have eyes and ears, day and night. Unlike humans, these readers are built to capture information 24/7, which is helpful when you need to retrieve information from the previous days or even months.

3. Detailed0 License Plate Reporting

Whether you have a perimeter gate or not, license plate recognition can act as a barrier of entry and exit. When utilized at both entry and exit locations you can create a plethora of reports such as

LPR Reports
LPR Reports
  • Capture Make, Model, Color, and Type
  • Gathers plate and vehicle image
  • Transactions
  • Vehicles Onsite, know who has come in that hasnt left
  • Vehicle Activity
  • Muster Report
  • HOA LPR Time On-Site
  • Unregistered Vehicle Report e.g. tailgaters
  • Cut Through Report
  • Roving Vehicle Report
  • Overstay Report

4. 98% Reliability

License plate recognition offers a 98% success rate on characters in being able to capture one car per second. The human eye simply can’t do this while simultaneously writing the plate numbers down in a logbook. However let’s say a vehicle has some fun in the mud and the plate was covered. You would still get the picture of the vehicle as well as the make, model, color, and style.

If there has been erroneous logbook information that prevented you from catching the perpetrator in the past, this technology will certainly help. Even better, in some setups, you’ll have access to both stills and video footage, which means you can double-check the license plate information if necessary.

5. Civilian Safety

When your HOA’s security personnel encounters an incident, the first thoughts that might come to their minds are: 

  • “How do I approach the person?” 
  • “How will the person react?”
  • “Is the person armed?” 

Most security teams are certainly trained for these types of encounters. But if your team isn’t, you can rest easy knowing that you have the license plate and vhicle information to report the incident to the proper authorities without compromising anyone’s safety. 

6. Crime Deterrent

One factor that encourages someone to commit a crime is the idea that “no one is looking.” If no one sees anything, then there’s no evidence, and they can get away with it scot-free. But with cameras around, it becomes a different story.

When criminals know that your HOA’s cameras have automated license plate recognition, they will think twice about following through with their plans. After all, ALPR can capture their information and prompt you to notify the police immediately. 

Another deterrent is to put up signs at your HOA’s entrance and exit points, which will inform people that you record this information through your high-speed cameras.

7. Whitelist Residents

If you have a database of resident vehicles which you will if you are investing in vehicular access control such as transponders or remote controls, you can remove resident’s vehicles from reporting so they are not constantly captured by ALPR’s and you can focus on only capturing foreign vehicles in your community. Your residents may appreciate this as they have peace of mind their plates are not being captured and stored.

Get In Touch to Learn More About Proptia License Plate Recognition

Trusted providers like Proptia only have the safety and security of your community in mind. We will never share or sell your collected data. If you are looking for reliable license plate readers and a single sign-on security system for your community, schedule a demo with us. 


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