But, beyond this, there are several simple security measures you can do to makeover your home and make it more secure. We’ve put together a list of some of the things you can do after a quick trip to the hardware store this weekend.
FBI statistics show that over 60 percent of break-ins happen by forced entry. If a burglar is going to enter the house through a door, they’ll often try to kick it in. By adding a deadbolt to every exterior door in your home, you’ll make it more difficult for them to break through. Ideally, you should have a throw lock where the metal extension goes at least an inch into the doorframe. The most secure deadbolt locks will consist of heavy-duty materials like solid steel, brass or bronze. Also, if you’ve just moved into your home, or if you’ve lived there for a while and have given out copies of your keys over the years, it’s a good idea to change the locks and deadbolts.
If someone is trying to break into your home, they want to go in undetected. A motion sensor light will put any potential intruder in the spotlight, which can help send them running. Place these lights near any entry point to your home and make sure you check that they’re working every couple of months.
Do Some Landscaping
If your home has hedges and bushes that are cloaking windows or other entry points, trim them down. High hedges and bushes provide the perfect concealment for burglars and can increase the odds of a break in. Tulane University suggests that ground plants should be no higher than three feet tall, but a good rule of thumb is to have them trimmed so doors and windows are visible to neighbors. Planting thorny plants, like holly or roses, around ground-level windows can help as well.
If you have tall trees that could provide access to second story windows, these should be trimmed as well to help prevent would-be intruders from scaling a tree and entering your home through a second story window. We also recommend placing some high gauge gravel around areas surrounding windows. If a burglar steps on this, it creates a lot of noise and acts as a further deterrent.
Make Home Security System Signs Noticeable
If you’ve got a home security system, you should make it well known. When you got your system installed, you should have received signs and stickers, which you should place near any external entry point of your home, including in the back yard. Statistics report that 90 percent of convicted burglars said they will avoid homes with alarm systems, so these little signs can help make a difference.
Completing one or more of these upgrades is fairly simple, but can have a profound impact on your home security. This should give you more peace of mind and keep your family and valuables protected.
Written by Hillary Johnston
A proud mother of four, Hillary is passionate about safety education. She holds a degree in Public Health and Disaster Management. Learn more