Simple Tips on Protecting Your Property and Improving Home Security

Home security provides your family with peace of mind and creates a more comfortable living space in any geographic location. Learn how to enhance your property and lifestyle with these simple protection and home security tips.

Tip # 1 - Find an Alarm that Makes Noise

Many homeowners assume that alarms must be monitored for optimum protection. In actual fact, a reliable alarm set at high volume will scare off many would-be burglars and provides your property with a decent level of protection. Monitored alarms also keep tabs on air quality levels and may be connected with the home comfort appliances, but having a loud alarm offers a similar level of protection and saves you the monthly monitoring fee.

Tip # 2 - Lock Upgrades Cost Less Than You Think

Are your exterior doors fitted with commercial deadbolts? If not, consider installing grade one or two deadbolts to improve basic home security. Check out popular brands like Weiser Lock and Schlage, which make a quick DIY project. Replacing the strike plate with a thicker brass type and using longer screws to install helps to defend against forceful entry, and costs less than $30.

Tip # 3 - Door Upgrades Are Worth the Investment

While lock upgrades come with a low price tag, exterior door upgrades tend to cost a significant amount. Good quality entrance doors, made from steel, fiberglass or solid wood, resist force and help to deter thieves looking for a quick entry. Consider replacing French doors with a different style that reduces the amount of windows and upgrades strength and durability. Call your local door and window contractor for an estimate.

Tip # 4 - Avoid the Obvious Signs of an Empty House

A majority of robberies occur in the daylight hours. Be sure to leave your home secure while at work or away and avoid those telltale signs of an empty house. Hang a mailbox to keep the newspaper and mail out of sight. Remember to ask a friend or neighbor to collect these when you're away from home for an extended period of time. Also consider setting up several timers inside the home to turn lights on and off throughout the day. Make it sporadic to avoid an obvious pattern and be sure to have your driveway cleared of any snow during a winter vacation.

Tip # 5 - Get a Dog, or Just Look Like You Have One

Dogs deter would-be burglars with a fierce snarl and the threat of barking. Several telltale signs of a dog on the premises can offer a similar level of protection and direct thieves to look elsewhere. "Beware of Dog' signs, a dog house or even hanging a leash on a hook outside of your door can create the impression of dog ownership. Of course, having a dog offers countless other benefits, and remains one of the most effective methods of home security available.

Tip # 6 - Trim Back the Bushes

Landscaping experts agree that regular trimming of your bushes and shrubs helps to enhance growth. But overgrown shrubbery also provides a place for robbers to hide or lurk unseen near your home. Take a close look at the plantings around your entrance doors and windows, and schedule regular trimming. Read up on when the plant needs to be pruned for optimum growth. Some trees and bushes should be trimmed in the fall before heading into the dormant season, while others should be pruned in the early spring or just after flowering.

Tip # 7 - Ground Floor Windows Need a Security Boost

Burglars look for easy access to the interior of your home, often through the entrance doors or a ground floor window. We've discussed how to improve home security on your entrance door, but you can also enhance the strength of ground floor windows for an overall improvement. Install steel bars, plexiglass or an extra pane of glass on these windows as reinforcement. Replace older windows that can be removed from the outside, and be sure to use dowels or wood pieces on the inside to block window mechanisms from opening too far.

Tip # 8 - Fences Are Your Friends

Fences create a physical boundary around your property, contain pets and keep your neighbor's stuff from infringing on your own turf. But fences also present an obstacle to potential burglars. A four to six foot tall fence with a secure gate adds another level of protection around your home. Solid privacy fences installed near your entrance doors and ground floor windows may create hiding places for lurking thieves, but fences located on the property lines encourage burglars to try another house. Think of this home improvement project as a multifaceted investment.

Tip # 9 - Let the Lights Sense Motion

Motion sensor lights represent another simple, inexpensive upgrade to enhance home security. Exchange your conventional exterior light fixture with a motion detecting brand from top manufacturers like Sylvania to deter thieves from coming near the house. Motion sensing lights also scare pesky critters away and help to create a lived-in look when you're away from home. Many homeowners appreciate the convenience of motion sensor lights as they approach their own door, and the illumination created provides a higher level of personal security as well.

Tip # 10 - Be Careful With Your Wast

Many robberies occur after the holidays, when thieves can nab plenty of goods in a short period of time. Think about how you discard your post-holiday waste. Leaving large or well labelled boxes at the curb before recycling pick up advertises your gifts and may attract criminals casing the neighborhood. Cover your waste with solid, secure garbage cans and recycle bins, or spread the task out by pacing your disposal efforts.

Several small and inexpensive home improvement projects can enhance your home security. From lock and door upgrades to landscaping tasks, fence installation and new light fixtures, these simple tasks help to protect your property from burglary and add peace of mind every day.

Posted by: diana
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