Home security is an important topic to address, especially for first-time house buyers. Unfortunately, home burglaries happen too regular; burglars strike every twenty-one seconds so home security should be a top priority! By controlling access, providing visibility, and maintaining your property, you are not only protecting your belongings and home, but also yourself and your family. This guide is designed to provide you with some great tips on how you can enhance the security of your home. Here are just 10 steps you could take to help secure your home.
Get a dog
Dogs will often bark when they sense unfamiliar people coming to your doorstep, warding off potential criminals. As if you need an excuse to get a four-legged friend, go Rex!
Be smart about who you let into your home
It’s crucial to keep a close eye on people you hire to work in your home, and keep your valuables secured, out of sight and out of reach. Keep in mind that anytime you let someone into your home you are essentially giving them an opportunity to steal, scope out your valuables, and/or make plans to come back at another time to take your belongings that they may have spotted. Keep those eyes peeled!
Install a home security/alarm system
A home security camera will be a great thing to have because it will essentially keep tabs on people, and help you keep an eye on unwanted visitors and behaviour. This is Big Brother at it’s finest. You can get security cameras that are part of a complete home security system, or you can use cameras that work on their own. Whichever way you go, we recommend using a security camera with a mobile app, so you can see footage in real time and store it if you ever need to go to the police. Your new home should have some form of a security system, whether it’s a basic DIY system or one that comes with professional monitoring and home automation. Today there are plenty of home security options for every budget and every level of protection. To choose a system that you’re comfortable with, evaluate the needs of your neighbourhood and your house. We say get an expert in to evaluate your home!
Know your neighbours
A great way to ward off unwanted visitors and potential burglars is to get friendly with your neighbours so that everyone can help each other out. This is especially helpful when/if you go on vacation for an extended period of time and need someone to help you keep a closer eye. Burglars are a lot less likely to go through with a break in if they think they might be watched. So be a great neighbour and pop round next door with some freshly baked muffins!
Make sure your doors and windows are locked
This step is the easiest way to keep burglars and unwanted visitors out of your home. Easy access will invite bad news and people. Don’t help a burglar stroll in through the front door (34% of them do!). Inspect all of your exterior doors to make sure the door frames are strong and the hinges are protected. Unfortunately, manufacturer latches on windows aren’t always effective either, sometimes they’re downright flimsy. If you don’t like the looks of your window latches, beef up security with locks or key-operated levers. But you don’t have to stop there, why not plant some really prickly bushes under your ground floor windows! That’ll teach them!
Light up your home
Thieves will frequent dark areas because it’s harder for them to run away and not get caught if there is plenty of light. Having light around your home at night will keep your area well-lit and more likely clear of criminals. Criminals don’t like to be in the spotlight. Keep bad folk away with ample outdoor lighting. Place lights around your front and back yards, along pathways, and near the garage and other outdoor structures. Use motion-activated lights, save energy with solar-powered lights and even put outdoor lights on a timer. Spot on Sherlock!
Eliminate hiding places
Trees and shrubs may give your house curb appeal, but they also give burglars a handy place to hide. Trim down trees and plants close to your home that could be used for cover. Opt for smaller flowers and bushes instead. If you have trees near windows, either remove them or reinforce those windows with extra security.
Don’t forget the garage
This entry point to your home is becoming more popular with criminals. And even if they can’t access your house, chances are you have plenty of good stuff stored in the garage (i.e. your secret beer stash, we all have one!) Make it a habit to lock all doors to the garage. You may also consider keeping your garage door opener in the house. That way a burglar can’t grab it out of your car. And if you use a security code to open the garage make sure you keep it secret and never enter it in front of delivery people, neighbours, or anyone else.
Use home automation
If you’ve been tempted to turn your regular house into a smart home, security is one compelling reason to follow through. Home automation can give you remote (or scheduled) control of lights, locks, security cameras, smoke alarms, and other safety devices. You can get real-time alerts about suspicious activity, so you can respond quickly and thwart potential thieves. Now that’s sneaky!
Lock down your wi-fi network
Your home wireless network is a doorway to your personal and financial information. If you use home automation it can make your house vulnerable to a break-in. Use our tips and tricks to keep hackers off your home network. Secure your wireless router, enable WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) or WPA2 encryption, rename and hide your home network, use a firewall, install antivirus and anti-malware protection and create strong passwords. Or just ask an expert to help you like I did!
So is your home as secure as Fort Knox now? It is? Congratulations!
But remember thieves are always looking out for themselves, so it is crucial to do the same and be ruthless in protecting your home and family. If you are at all concerned about the expensive and/or sentimental valuables in your home it would be worth considering renting a self storage room, short or long-term. MyStore Self Storage has a 24-hour monitoring system, CCTV security, individually alarmed rooms each with their own unique pin code and padlocked doors. Our facility is designed to be safer than any home, located just on the outskirts of Witney, Oxfordshire, we invite you to come and see for yourself.