Keeping your home safe and secure is fundamentally important. Your home is where your possessions are, where you find relaxation, and where your children sleep. Knowing your family and your valuables are safe is important for both your mental and physical well-being.
While alarm systems and surveillance cameras can play important parts in keeping your home safe, they are only part of the solution.
These six steps can help you make your home more secure.
Lights are a simple, yet highly effective, deterrent to potential burglars. While they won’t actually hold anyone out, they make it much more difficult for someone to sneak around your house or attempt to pry open a window. Crime often happens in dark places where few can see.
Motion sensor lights can be very effective, as they can surprise someone approaching your house and turn them back. They can also serve as a warning for you that something might be going on outside your home. At the same time, a motion light helps save electricity by only activating when someone or something moves in front of it.
The type of locks you use to keep potential robbers out of your house is up to you. Your options range from a simple key lock in a door handle, all the way to a reinforced steel door. The strength of your lock depends on your security concerns.
Locks are an important first step in stopping potential burglars. It’s important to remember that home invasions can be crimes of convenience. An open window or an unlocked side door can present an opportunity too good to resist for some passerby. When in doubt, lock your doors and windows.
There are different types of alarm system that give varying degrees of protection. Some set off a loud siren when a door is forced open, a window is broken, or a motion alarm is tripped. Others silently notify the police or have offsite personnel monitoring your cameras. Your personal circumstances will determine this choice for you.
Customer service is another important factor. Do you have 24 access to a security call center? This is key to getting the police to your house fast or to letting them know it was a false alarm.
Alarm systems also often come with stickers to place on your doors and windows. Like lights, no sticker will ever physically stop a burglar from entering your house. The chance that you have a functioning alarm attached to a police dispatch call, however, may be enough to make the potential burglar decide to move on to an easier mark.
Well-placed security cameras deter criminals, can alert police, and can be a vital source of evidence after a break-in.
As a form of deterrence, a camera at your front door or gate can scare off a would-be burglar. Video evidence of their crime increases the chance of getting caught. Even a camera that’s not hooked up to anything can deter someone trying to break in.
Cameras also give you a chance to watch what’s going on outside your house from a secure place. If you have an alarm company, they may also be wired into the system and will be able to see what’s happening on your property.
Don’t advertise when you’re away
This is an obvious one, yet many of us advertise that we’ll be away without thinking about it. Whether it’s updating your Facebook status about your trip to Mexico or leaving all the lights off for days in a row, you need to be careful about the information you’re providing people.
It’s always wise to ask neighbors to collect your mail if you’re going to be away for a while and to leave the front light on. An even better option is to set up a security feature that turns different lights on and off around your house at pre-set times during the day.
Have a Good Relationship with Neighbors
Tying into all the factors above is maintaining a good relationship with your neighbors. If your alarm or motion light goes off, it’s best to have someone nearby to be able to take a look or call you to see that everything’s alright. Your neighbors are also well-placed to pick up your mail while you’re away.