We take a look at what is entailed when putting together a complete home security plan for you and your loved ones. There’s nothing scarier than having your home broken into. Most people think it will never happen to them and become complacent about home security. The unfortunate truth is in 2014 alone 10.4 million households experienced property victimization. It’s up to each homeowner to protect their household and family from criminals that are looking to do harm. Taking a few essential home security measures can mean the difference between staying safe and becoming a victim.
Home Security Plan
Simply having a security system installed is enough to make most burglars bypass a home. They’re looking for easy targets so they don’t want to run the risk of triggering an alarm the second they step inside. Having an alarm system is a vital element of home security. The real decision comes down whether to install a monitored security system. Monitored systems are connected to a monitoring center where experts receive an immediate notification when an alarm goes off. In an emergency, they can notify the local authorities to get assistance to your doorstep as quickly as possible. No matter which option you choose, it’s important to use equipment with a proven track record of reliability like an ADT security system. The last thing any homeowner wants is to rely on a security system only to have it fail when it’s needed most. A residual benefit of having a security system is you may be able to get a discount on home insurance premiums and assistance filing an insurance claim if there is a break-in.
So many people make the mistake of thinking burglars find some covert way inside of homes. In reality, they often use the door like everyone else. Upwards of 73% of burglars will kick in a door to get inside. The more secure your doors are the more difficult it is for someone to break into your home.
Recommended door security includes:
- Using a reinforced steel storm door or solid wood door that’s more durable.
- Using a door with interior hinges.
- Not using a front door with a window that allows a person to reach the lock.
- Using a dead bolt lock that’s at least one inch thick on all exterior doors.
- Using a secondary, keyless dead bolt that can only be opened from the inside.
- Installing a strike plate that will reinforce the locking mechanism by screwing into the studs of the doorframe.
- Placing a metal bar in the track of all sliding glass doors to prevent them from opening.
- Changing all of the door locks if you just moved into your home.
- Not planting shrubs and trees right next to the door where burglars can hide.
- Reinforcing the doorjamb with galvanized steel.
- Putting motion sensor alarms on all exterior doors.
- Using cylinder guards on locks to prevent the door from being pried open.
- Turning on the porch light outside the front door every night.
Don’t forget about the garage door. It’s another common spot that burglars use to gain entry into a house. Experts say the number one rule is to never leave your garage door opener in your car where it’s easily accessible. A burglar can break into your car and then simply push a button to open the garage door. It’s also important to lock the door between the house and the garage in case someone is able to get the garage door open. Once you’re inside you make it even more difficult by shutting off the door motor and/or manually bolting the door.
All that trouble you go through to secure your doors won’t make much of a difference if a window gives a burglar easy entry into your home. In an ABC News segment, a convicted burglar broke into a home, and an unlocked window let him right inside. Making sure all of your windows are locked is the first step in increasing your home security. You can take these additional steps to improve window security:
- Put a metal bar in the track of all sliding windows.
- Opt for windows with burglar-resistant glass.
- Clear away shrubs and plants near windows that can conceal a burglar.
- Put motion sensor alarms on all windows.
Outdoor Motion-Activated Lights
One of the things that burglars hate most is good lighting. Their goal is to get in and out of a home undetected, which isn’t as easy if there are lights around the entrances. The great thing about motion-activated lights is they startle burglars who usually flee when anything unexpected happens. The other benefit of motion-activated lights is they tip you off that something is moving around outside. Motion-activated lights should be placed at every entrance, including the garage door. The more you have the better protected you’ll be. Recommended Reading:
- Becoming an Urban Planner: A Guide to Careers in Planning and Urban Design by Michael Bayer
- Sustainable Urbanism: Urban Design With Nature by Douglas Farrs
- eBooks by Landscape Architects Network
Article by Brooklyn Williams Featured image: By Ildar Sagdejev (Specious) – Own work, GFDL, sourcePublished in