Top Ten Best Ways to Protect Your Home

Alarm system

Security remains one of the important things you can provide your family. Homeowners across the country invest countless dollars to obtain security for their property, and modern technology allows for a wider variety of options. Find out the ten best ways to protect your home and reach a higher state of security.

Install in a Loud Alarm

Consumers may assume that complicated, monitored alarms provide the greatest amount of security. But in reality, loud, unmonitored alarms provide an effective thief deterrent. Set the audible alarm to sound for at least thirty seconds to scare off burglars.

Modern home security alarms provide self-monitoring features, and let you know the moment your alarm sounds via cell phone or text message. These products may be enough to keep your home safe, when combined with a loud alarm and warning stickers on your windows and doors.

Upgrade the Door Locks

This inexpensive DIY project takes just a few hours, but enhances your home security immeasurably. Look for a Grade 1 or Grade 2 deadbolt lock that provides commercial strength. Use wooden or steel jambs to block sliding patio doors from opening beyond a certain point.

Another easy lock upgrade involves the strike plate. Replace a standard or mid-grade strike plate with a heavy duty brass product and use longer screws to fit the plate in place. This provides better resistance against kicking and forceful entry, and should cost you no more than $25.

Install Motion Sensor Exterior Lighting

Illuminate the area around your home with dependable, efficient fixtures. Motion sensor lighting provides an added benefit—burglars often flee when a light comes on, unsure whether or not the home is occupied. Average quality motion sensor fixtures cost between $75 and $125, and an experienced electrician will install these systems quickly and affordably.

Make Arrangements When Traveling

Avoid creating the appearance of an empty home. Ask a trusted neighbor to collect your flyers and mail, have the newspaper delivery held while you're away and arrange for someone to take out your garbage as per the normal routine. Do not make the mistake of leaving your porch light on all day and try to set up timers for different areas of the house. Having random lights turn on and off may fool burglars into thinking you're home, or at least plant that suspicion. Sometimes that's all it takes for thieves to skip your home and try another.

Upgrade Your Doors

Standard builder's doors are flimsy. A determined burglar can kick in a standard door within just five seconds, entering your home with little hassle. Stronger doors provide greater resistance, and improve your property value and curb appeal.

Consider a solid wood door for durability and strength, or opt for a steel door for the ultimate in home security. Avoid installing exterior doors with excessively large windows that can be quickly broken for access.

Keep Shrubs and Bushes Trimmed

Tall, wide and overgrown shrubs and bushes provide the ideal spot for would-be burglars to hide. While some greenery around the windows and doors helps to control energy costs and beautifies your home, wise homeowners keep this area neat and tidy.

Hire a landscaper to trim the bushes on a regular basis, or count the exercise benefits and get out your own pruners every few months. Many shrubs and bushes thrive with regular trimming, and this practice reduces the amount of cover for thieves and lurkers.

Reinforce Ground Floor Windows

A majority of burglars enter on the ground floor, and many times through the windows. Reinforce your windows with film or a layer of plexiglass. This allows natural light to filter through and does not detract from the view, but a layer of reinforcement makes it difficult for burglars to break the glass and gain access to the lock or handle.

Consider replacing older windows that come out of the frame and use strong dowels to block ground floor windows from opening too wide. Keep up with maintenance on your home's exterior, including caulking or repairing gaps in and around windows.

Invest in Smart Garbage Cans and Recycling Gear

Pay attention to what your garbage says, and avoid advertising new purchases at the curb. Shop for a generously sized garbage can with a secure lid, but not just to keep out the critters. This allows plenty of room for packaging of items that seem attractive to thieves (cell phones, electronics, tools, etc.)

Look for the same type of box for your recycling and consider hiding cardboard boxes for televisions, computers and other electronics. Think about what your garbage and recycling says about your purchasing habits. Larger trash cans and recycling bins provide space to adequately hide these items and avoid attracting unwanted attention.

Install a Fence

Fences provide a visual barrier around your property, but they may also deter thieves. These simple structures create another obstacle for burglars to pass when approaching a home and when escaping from a home. Choose between a wood privacy fence, economical chain link or one of the other styles available through your local fencing contractor. Consider installing a lock on any gates to prevent access from those points.

Check your local fencing bylaws before installing this structure. Height and style restrictions may exist.

Use Common Sense

Break-ins happen everyday in a wide range of neighborhoods. But you can avoid becoming a statistic by simply exercising a little common sense. Lock all doors and windows when leaving the house, even for a few hours. A majority of break-ins happen during the day and locked doors provide the first line of defense in any city across the country.

Protect your home with minimal investment and a healthy dose of sense. These top ten tips for greater home security offer peace of mind and enhanced value, and in many cases, the steps take little time and effort. With the help of experienced contractors, quality products and a good plan, your home security and comfort will improve.

Posted by: TrustedPros
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