With many homes now offering potential thieves high cost items like lap tops, MP3 players and credit cards, there are important tips to consider in keeping your home and your possessions safe.
Looks Like no one is in?
Whether you work long shifts, or live alone, making the house seem used is really important. A house in darkness and silence is more likely to be targeted than a house which seems busy and populated. Use timer switches well and get ones which set three or four patterns of activity rather than simple on-off repeaters. Leave a radio gently playing in the back ground and if you are away for a few days, get honest neighbours or trusted friends to collect mail or deliveries, open and close curtains and keep the windowsill plants healthy.
A home with no security features which are visible is most at risk – from lighting to modern doors and windows or even burglar alarm boxes and CCTV. If your home is the weakest in the street, then is becomes a preferred target. Look at investing in home alarm systems, a cost-effective deterrent even if the doors and windows are aged.
Of course, every home has a doorway or two; but it is the most obvious access point to any home or you and burglars. Your doorway must have quality locks, which are used, lighting and never be left open at night or during the day. Whilst many of us are careful and guarded with our front doors, often garage doors or garden doors are seen as being more secure because they often face private land. Sadly, whilst you pop inside on a summer’s day for a cool drink, an opportunist thief can be wheeling away bikes from your garage.
Windows and Patio Doors
There is a growing trend for homes to have nice, airy patio doors from main rooms to gardens and of course, this allows light to flood into a room; unfortunately, light might not be the only thing coming in! Traditional sliding patio doors are identified weak spots in any home. The sliding system can be easily derailed by an expert thief, whether locked or not. French doors with deadbolts are much more secure.
Windows are another source of access; again during summer, we often go to bed leaving side windows open or ajar. Ensure your windows are locked, even when not totally closed and try to obscure would-be thieves’ view into a room with blinds, netting or even plants and flowers. Remove keys from the inside of windows or patio doors, and keep them in a safe, accessible but hidden place.
There’s nothing wrong with a busy garden, but lots of bushes and thick planting can be handy hiding places for thieves to monitor your coming-and-going, or see what valuables you might have in your life. Ensure you have outside lighting, preferable motion sensitive lighting which provides immediate illumination if someone is lurking around. If you have natural hedges around your home, these are useful deterrents because they are hard to climb or jump from, but make sure the house isn’t obscured from neighbour’s views too much – as they may well be witnesses to a stranger on your property.