No matter where you live in the world, the unfortunate reality is that there’s no preventing criminal activity in your local area. One of the most common neighborhood crimes is burglary, which not only has the power to strip you of your most valuable possessions but also leaves you feeling permanently on edge in what is supposed to be the comfort of your own home.
A house burglary can have such a damaging effect on your mental wellbeing that it can even lead to PTSD, a stress-related disorder that presents itself after a traumatic event has been experienced. For this reason alone, it’s important to take all the precautionary steps you can to prevent a burglary or any other neighborhood crime on your property. Follow the steps below to help protect your family and home from criminals.
1. Eliminate hiding spots
You might think that having plenty of overgrown shrubbery and trees would help to protect your home by acting as a physical barrier, but this isn’t always the case. Any overgrown plant life could easily make a good hiding spot for a burglar, so it’s worth eliminating these options where you can.
2. Make friends with your neighbors
It’s worrying how little of us even know who our neighbors are these days, especially when it comes to preventing crime. A strong community is much more likely to see less crime, simply for the fact that people are looking out for one another and alerting each other of suspicious activity.
3. Leave your expensive items out of the limelight
It seems obvious, but showing off your expensive items, like cars and televisions, may entice criminals to commit a burglary. Make sure you’re storing these belongings out of sight when you can- cars and expensive outdoor furniture should be stored in a garage when not in use, and if you’ve got something expensive on display downstairs, make sure it’s not easily noticeable through your window from the street.
4. Build a perimeter fence
Fencing is an easy way to prevent burglars from even being able to access your front of back garden. Iron or chain-link fences are the most difficult to climb, and should deter criminals from putting in the effort to do so. The allusion of a large fence in itself should be enough to deter wrongdoers away from your home. If you have a gate on your fence, make sure it’s securely closed when not in use.
5. Install new locks
If you’re moving house, it’s wise to install new locks to be sure that the old tenant cannot enter your property once you’ve moved in. There is no way to be sure that nobody outside of your own family has copies of the keys to your doors, so it’s best to change the locks as a precaution. It won’t take long for a CLK Locksmith to change your locks for you on-site, and the job doesn’t cost much at all. It’s worth the small investment in the knowledge that you’ll feel a lot better once it’s done.
6. Get a dog
For some people, having a pet simply isn’t practical, and by no means should you consider getting a dog purely for guarding purposes. However, introducing a new furry friend to your household has more benefits than simply providing you with a new companion. Dogs are always on the alert and can sense strangers before you’re even aware of them. Their barking has the potential to startle a burglar and deter them from entering your property.
7. Install safety features in your car
Not all of us have garages, and if you park on your drive or in the street, it’s worth taking extra measures to keep your car safe overnight. Steering locks prevent your car’s wheel from being turned, even if criminals manage to gain access into it. Make sure you keep your doors locked at all times, and check that windows are closed once you’ve parked up.
8. Consider a home security system
One of the best ways to achieve peace of mind inside your home is by installing a security system. Home security systems are easy to install, and can be as simple or complex as you require. They normally include alarms, motion sensors, and door and window locks. If an intrusion is detected, you will be alerted through your alarm company, or, if you have a smart home security system, directly through to an app on your mobile phone.
9. Store your valuables in a lockbox or safe
Some of our valuable possessions are impractical to store away, but for others, simply hiding them on the top shelf of your wardrobe might not be the most effective option when it comes to safety. Anything that is small enough should be stored away in a lockbox or a safe, preferably one that requires a security pin to be opened. Bear in mind that a burglar may still attempt to carry a safe away with them, so consider securing it to your floor or mounting it to a wall where possible.
10. Get window locks fitted
Not all burglars gain entry to your house using the conventional route. It can be far too easy for a burglar to use special tools to break in through your ground floor windows, so fitting them with locks is a good investment in home security. Locked windows will make the breaking-and-entering process all the more challenging, deterring criminals from attempting to enter your home.
11. Keep doors and gates locked
It’s fairly shocking just how few of us lock our front and back doors, allowing strangers to gain entry to our homes by simply walking inside. Even if you’re at home yourself, there is no guarantee that a burglar might not still break in if they know that the process is an easy one for them. Locking your doors only takes a second to do, and once you get into a habit of it, you won’t even know that you’re doing it.