You are not the only person who loves your beautiful artistic home. Other people do too, and some for all the wrong reasons. We’re not talking about envy here, but rather burglars.
How Bad Can It Be?
The United States has an estimated 2 million burglaries a year. This figure means that a home is broken into every fifteen seconds and this number also places the US as a country with the most burglaries in the world. In actuality, this figure is not surprising because America also happens to be a country with the highest crime rate in the world.
While from a statistical perspective this is not good news, what is even more surprising is the lack of awareness about this high crime rate. In fact, security experts estimate that about 90 percent of break-ins are a result of ignorance about criminality in the United States and a distressingly high amount of naiveté about the importance of home security.
How Do You Stay Safe?
Despites these grim figures and bad news, it’s actually fairly simple to protect your castle.
Here are some 6 ideas that can help protect your home:
- Use burglar alarms. You should not only use display alarms, but display through signage on lawns and decals in windows and doors that you have them. This is not one of those things to be subtle about. Just having a burglar alarm is a deterrent (and even a bluff about having one with fake warning stickers works well). Be sure to test your alarm occasionally, and warn neighbors about it when you do. Since thieves may decide to disable your alarm with a pair of wire cutters, it’s preferable to use wireless alarms. Cameras, too, work well as deterrents. A blog post on the Cary ADT home security site suggests homeowners should “research security systems and cameras for your property.”
- Get dogs. Dogs, like alarms, are another noisy deterrent. While bigger dogs are better than smaller ones, small dogs are better than none at all. Burglars don’t want to deal with barking dogs and the possibility of a dog bite, and will look for easier targets. Again, if you don’t want a dog, even fake signs help. A “Beware the Dog” sign on the front lawn will often do the trick.
- Light up your property. Entryways, parking areas and front and back doors should be lit up. If you think bright lights would make your home look like a stadium at night, motion-sensor lights work well, too. One problem with lights is that they can be disabled by thieves, so be sure that your lights are ten feet or higher.
- Bars on windows. While these may look ugly on big windows, thieves are more interested in basement entrances, and this is where you should have bars.
- Good old fashioned locks. In this age of high-tech, locks still work very well. Protect your beautiful home with locks.
Here are some suggestions on locks:
- Change your locks if previous tenants or roommates may have the keys.
- Use deadbolt locks on doors.
- Use a double-key lock if your door has a glass panel to prevent someone from shattering the glass and opening the door from the inside.
- Use bolt locks for garage doors.
- Use key locks with a steel rod for your patio.
- Encourage a neighborhood watch. Why not talk to your neighbors about organizing a neighborhood watch so that you can all work together to keep your homes safe?
Here are some examples of suspicious behavior to notice:
- Someone parking near your house and observing it.
- Someone pulling up on your driveway when you are at work.
- Someone going through your dumpsters. Thieves often scour a neighborhood to see if they can find big boxes that might indicate the purchase of large electronic goods.
- Someone going through your mailbox.
If you are living in a designer home, you are probably also living in a great neighborhood and may even be living in a city known for its high culture. Still, you never know who is roaming around in your neighborhood looking for a quick way to get rich. While the crime rate for your neck of the woods may be well below the national average, do you want to take the risk of becoming a statistic?