Home security is never something to scrimp on. Taking effective security measures can help to give us peace of mind when we need it most and when we may be at our most vulnerable e.g. sleeping at home or away on holiday. Security can become even more of a concern for the elderly and those with children, which is why many homeowners are taking steps to address potential security flaws.
With so many options on the market, it’s hard to know where to begin. From secure locks to cameras, security lights and gates, we’ve explored a few of these options for you below, as well as highlighted popular vulnerabilities around the home and provided a host of other valuable home security tips.
Common Targets For Criminals Around The Home
- Sheds & Log Cabins
- Garages & Out Houses
- Patio Doors
- Conservatories & Orangeries
Protect Your Household With Our Home Security Tips
- Ensure all windows, doors and other access points have adequate locks. Where possible, use mortice locks on your doors as well as a chain. They provide extra strength against break-ins. Windows also need a reliable locking system, especially if they are single glazed. Patio doors can also be a weak point, so take steps to ensure that they have a secure locking mechanism in place when installed.
- Always lock your property when it is empty, even if you are just popping to the local shops or over the road for a chat with a neighbour. You never know who might be waiting to enter your property when your back is turned. Close all windows and doors before leaving.
- Ensure garden sheds, log cabins, garages and other out houses are kept locked and secured. Consider fitting them all with an alarm in order to prevent crime.
- Always keep your car keys out of sight and away from doors and windows. Do not make them easy to find, as this will be a serious temptation to criminals.
- If you’re going away on holiday, ask a trustworthy neighbour or friend to keep an eye on things in your absence. Avoid informing everyone on Facebook and Twitter of the fact that you’re away from home – this would be an invitation to criminals and it may actually invalidate your home and contents insurance!
- Keep valuables out of sight. Keep children’s toys, bicycles, motorbikes and other highly prized items locked up. This also includes garden furniture which may prove to be attractive to would be thieves.
- Consider fitting lights on a timer or play a radio when your house is vacant. This will give people the illusion that the property is in fact occupied and will help to deter criminals.
- Avoid storing a spare key outside in any obvious place – under a plant pot near the door, under a strategically placed rock or behind the bin. All are obvious places and should be avoided. If you must store a key, consider using a door key safe. Or hide it extremely well!
- Invest in a security alarm for your home, as well as independent alarms for your garage, shed, log cabin and other out houses as required.
- Avoid leaving garden tools and DIY items around your garden or pathways. A freely placed ladder can make top floor window entry all the more easier for a criminal.
- Extend your property with a front porch. This will provide an extra layer of security to your key access point – the front door, and will present an unwelcome challenge to burglars.
- Fit outdoor security lights to your property, including the front, sides and rear sections. This will alert you to the presence of any intruders after dark as well as startle them.
- Get a pet dog – a barking dog is enough to put anyone off targeting your property! No matter what the breed or size, a bark can prove to be an effective deterrent.
- Take security to the next level by installing CCTV cameras. Previously a rather expensive option, they have become increasingly affordable over recent years and can help to provide further protection against residential crime.
- When it comes to garden planting, make use of prickly bushes and shrubs, which would prove to be an uncomfortable hiding spot for those on the wrong side of the law.
- Ensure pathways such as side paths make use of tall, lockable gates. This will help to minimise the chance of rear or side property access and keeping burglars at the front of your property means that they are more likely to be seen and caught in the act if the worst happens.
- Put up relevant home security signs – such as ‘CCTV in operation’, ‘Beware of the dog’, ‘Security system in use’ etc. to highlight the provision of security measures. Burglars are less likely to pounce on a well-protected home.
- Consider investing in an in-home safe for your valuables such as jewellery, cash and other items. Alternatively, consider storing valuables in an unusual place, such as your kitchen cupboards!
- If you’ve recently purchased a new TV, washing machine or other shiny new appliance, don’t put the empty box on the roadside! This will act as an advertisement to passers-by, “hey, we have a new TV, come and steal it!” Instead, take empty boxes to the recycling plant or ask the delivery people to take it away with them.
If you’re off on holiday, don’t forget to cancel the milk and newspaper orders. If these items stack up in your absence, people with know that you’re not home and will identify you as a potential target.
If one thing is for sure, it’s important to protect yourselves now, before something happens instead of thinking that it will never happen to you. Burglary is a horribly intrusive crime, so it’s best to take steps to protect your household against it.
We hope you’ve learned something from the above and wish you the best of luck with your home security going forward.
Author bio: This guest post has been contributed by http://www.rubberbond.co.uk, UK providers of EPDM roofing materials for sheds, garages, front porches and more.
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