Your home is your castle, but that doesn’t mean you have to build a moat around it to keep it – and everything in it – safe and sound. By following a few security tips, you can help improve your home’s safety and provide a powerful deterrent to would-be burglars.
1. Make sure your locks are strong. Especially if you have an older home, don’t rely on outdated hardware and old locking mechanisms to provide security. Consider adding a peephole for added protection.
2. Eliminate hiding places on your property. If your home is surrounded by bushes, keep them trimmed to prevent them from becoming a hiding place for someone looking to break in. Keeping them trimmed also makes your home more visible to neighbors and patrolling police who can keep an eye out for suspicious activity.
3. Protect potential break in points. If you don’t have bushes but you’re considering adding some, look for shrubs with thorns such as pyrachantha or flowering quince. These shrubs provide beauty while their thorns keep burglars at bay.
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4. Consider adding lighting to the outside of your home, including the addition of motion detector lights that turn on when someone enters your property. If you’re going on vacation, having a timer on your lights gives the impression that you’re home and continues to provide illumination to your property, even when you aren’t there to flip a switch. You can also purchase timers that allow televisions or radios to plug into them, providing sound throughout the day and strengthening the idea that someone is inside.
5. Don’t let it be obvious you’re not home. Have your newspapers and mail delivery held or arrange for a neighbor to pick them up each day while on vacation. Overstuffed mailboxes and a pile of unread papers are sure signs that the home’s occupants are away.
While you’re at it, let neighbors know how long you’ll be away and ask them to keep an eye on your home and to report any suspicious activity they may see. Let them know if any family members or friends will be stopping by to water plants or take in mail.
Hire someone – or ask a neighbor – to mow your lawn or shovel your driveway if you plan to be away for a long period, and if you’re going on a car trip, ask a neighbor with more than one vehicle to park a car in your driveway so it appears someone is home.
6. Don’t make the mistake of closing your blinds, shades or curtains when you go on vacation; keep them in their usual position. Remember: Closed window coverings can also help provide cover if someone does manage to break in.
7. Install locks on sheds and other outbuildings as well as fences to keep intruders out. Likewise, make sure the lock on your garage is in good shape and keep your garage locked at night and during the day when it is not being used.
8. Don’t hang keys in view of windows where they can be seen from the outside. If you have double-sided deadbolts, don’t leave the keys hanging in the locks if they’re located near a window.
9. Don’t hide a spare key under a doormat or flowerpot, in your mailbox, above your door frame or in another location that’s easy to guess. A better option than hiding a spare key: Give it to a trusted neighbor to hold onto.
Simple steps can mean big security. Print this list and keep it handy so you can refer to it as you make your home as secure as possible.
If you’d like a free security consultation, contact us now.