All over the world, crime is increasing at an alarming rate. In the US, there is at least one crime committed every minute. A lot of these crimes are carried out in residential areas and involve breaking into people’s homes. Many such burglaries result in the loss of properties and in some unfortunate instances, loss of life. Protecting yourself, your loved ones and valuables from intruders is easy if you know what to do. In this short article, we will explore 5 ways to secure your home against break-ins.
1. Change or Update Your Locks
The first way to secure your home should be obvious. But many people don’t think it’s important to change the locks after buying a new home. However, this is a critical practice. You can never tell who is in possession of a spare key for your new home, so it is important that you completely change all the locks.
“Changing your locks is one of the most effective ways of improving the security of your home and ensuring there are no extra keys lying around that could fall into the hands of strangers”, says Ken, a Locksmith expert from Worthing.
2. Install a Home Security System
Another way to secure your home is to install a home security system. This adds an extra layer of security, making your home or office largely burglar-proof.
Studies have shown that very few burglars will want to tackle the arduous task of bypassing a home security system. Apart from the difficulty involved in breaching this mechanism, a home security system also alerts the police if the wrong code is entered a number of times or if it is being tampered with in any way.
A home security system also includes other safety features, such as providing early warnings for smoke and fire. Many are also equipped with cameras to record any attempt by burglars to break into your home. But the best home security system in the world isn’t worth anything if you don’t regularly use it.
3. Keep Track of Your Spare Keys
People have a habit of keeping the spare keys to their home or office in ‘easy to guess’ places. Some hide spare keys under a foot mat or inside a flower pot outside. These are areas intruders will first look to search for a spare key, before trying to break into the house.
A better idea is to give your spare key to a neighbor or trustworthy friend or to wrap it in tin foil and bury it where you can easily find it. Also, you could find a loose brick and place your spare key underneath. Another option is to get a digital lock that comes with a combination code. Combination locks do not need keys to open. They come with a keypad, whereby you can input your pin to unlock the door.
4. Use Deadbolts for Exterior Doors
Exterior doors (whether on the front or back) are the first point of contact for intruders. These doors should be secured, with locks that are strong enough to withstand pressure.
“You cannot go wrong with deadbolts for exterior doors”, says James of KC Brighton Locksmiths.
While these locks may be a bit more expensive than knobs and standard locks, they are a whole lot less expensive than the cost of a break-in.
This makes it an easier and very effective way of securing your home or office. However, there are several mass produced deadbolt locks on the market that are susceptible to ‘lock bumping’, so you might want to consult with an expert to help you choose the right one.
5. Ensure the Exterior Is Always Lit Up at Night
Intruders and burglars always keep to the shadows. They work best in areas where there is little or no light. Having good exterior lighting in your home ensures that intruders have no dark corner in which to hide. This also gives the appearance that someone is at home.
If you happen to be away for the evening make sure you keep a couple of lights on in your apartment or house. This makes it look like there is someone at home. A burglar is less likely to break into your home if they believe someone is currently inside.