Best Home Security Tips
Your home is should be the one place where you and your family can truly relax, be yourself and feel safe and secure. It is your sanctuary after a hard day and a place where lasting memories are made.
But when your home is violated by burglars and thieves, your peace is suddenly disrupted and your once pleasant dreams can quickly become a dark nightmare. It will usually take some time for you to regain your sense of security and to get back to the point where you can feel comfortable again.
According to a recent FBI report, property crimes such as theft and burglary were the second most popular criminal activity in Florida, with illegal drugs being at the top of the list. Each individual county may see some variation in these statistics, but property crime will always be somewhere at the top of the list.
Taking steps to beef up your home’s security is of paramount importance. In most cases, most of the required measures are relatively inexpensive or carry no cost at all and take just a little time and common sense to put in place.
Here are some simple home security tips to keep your home and your family safe at all times whether or not you are around:
Install an alarm system
Always have your alarm system engaged when you are away from home and at night if you deem it necessary. While the alarm system cannot totally keep the burglars from breaking into your home, it is definitely a great deterrent that will alert you and your neighbors of a break-in attempt. In most cases, the burglar will immediately flee the premises, once an alarm system is engaged. If you install an alarm system, always make sure you have it armed to frustrate any burglary attempt.
Install surveillance cameras
As prices drop and their quality continue improve, home surveillance camera systems are rapidly increasing in popularity. These cameras have made solving crimes tremendously easier than it was before, since everything is recorded and there is usually clear evidence of the perpetrator(s) as well as the nature of the crime. A properly installed surveillance camera system can provide excellent visibility both outside to the entire periphery the of the home, as well as selected areas on the inside. Owners can also monitor activity at their home in real-time while they are away, with either their smartphone, mobile device or computer.
Get a dog
Apart from being great pets and companions, even the smallest breed of dogs can be a major deterrent to a burglar. Thieves depend on being quiet and stealthy to carry out their evil deeds, and a dog will quickly disrupt those plans by loudly barking and alerting you that someone is either on the property or lurking around the house. Burglars despise dogs, since they almost always prevent them from carrying out their plans.
Always keep your doors and windows locked
Be sure to lock all points of possible entry, when you are retiring for the night or when you are leaving home. Even when you are home, an open window or garage door will allow a burglar to scope out your house and get an idea of the kinds of valuables that you might have inside. If for ventilation or any other reason you want to sleep with your windows open then you must install a kind of window that can only be opened from inside and window locks that will only allow the window to be open by a few inches.
Eliminate all possible hideouts
Dark areas outside your house can provide good cover for a burglar to hide. Keep the outside of your home well lit with LED bulbs. The lifespan of these bulbs is quite impressive and they cost only a few pennies to operate, so they won’t spike your electric bill. The price of LED bulbs have decreased considerably over the years, making them an even better value. Trim bushes and shrubs – especially those that are close to windows and doors that could provide a hiding place for burglars. You may also consider installing motion detector spotlights that activate if there is movement around your home. These are also available in LED models and should be an important part of your overall home security strategy.
Secure sliding doors and windows
If you have sliding doors, you will need to take extra home steps to improve your home’s security to prevent thieves from breaking in. Sliding doors generally have very fragile locks that a burglar can easily manipulate to gain entry into your home. One way to prevent this is to install a sliding glass door lock pin, that prevents any of the panels in the door frame from sliding. You should also consider adding security film to the glass for extra protection to prevent or frustrate their attempt to enter your home.
Never make it obvious that you are not home
Whether you are leaving home for a few hours or a few days, make your absence as unnoticeable as possible, as not doing so could make your home an easy target for burglars. If you are going to be spending the night outside your home or returning really late, then leave your interior lights on – or better yet, put them on a timer that turns them on automatically, so that potential burglars will think that someone is home. If you are leaving for a few days, then you want to inform your neighbors and ask them to keep an eye on your property. You could also ask them to pick up your mail and deliveries, since a full mailbox and delivery sitting outside your home for days is an obvious sign that you are not home. You could also ask the post office to hold your mail and pause deliveries until you return.
Do not announce your vacation plans of social media
Avoid posting notification about your upcoming trip or announcing your arrival, because you don’t know who is reading your posts and watching and waiting for you to leave. It is also not a bad idea to save those pictures and videos from your trip until you return home. If you want to post then ensure your posts can only be seen by friends and people you trust.
Change locks when necessary
Whether you are moving into a new home or you’ve had someone who moved out or you have lost your key, it is best to change your locks to make sure that unauthorized persons cannot gain entry to your home. As a security precaution, you may also want to do a routine change of locks every few years. Your safety and peace of mind are more important, so do what is necessary to make sure your doors are safe from intruders.
The security of your home and your family are of the greatest importance, and providing this peace-of-mind takes proper planning and attention to detail. With these simple considerations, you can go a long way to protect yourself, your family and belongings for a very long time. Be sure to contact one of our FAH Certified security professionals for more help.