Home Improvement Projects to Increase Your Family’s Safety

windowsHome security is a serious issue. From simple burglaries to more complex cases of violent crime, its individual citizen’s responsibilities to protect themselves, their homes, and their families from intruders. There are a number of different steps that you can take to ensure that your home offers the highest level of security possible. Here are our top home improvement tips and security purchases to help you rest easier.

Consider an alarm system

Investing in an alarm system is a commitment. From the upfront cost to the recurring monthly fees, installing an alarm costs money. But alarms have a wide range of features, from notifying the company and the police in the case of a break in to panic buttons that allow you to call for help in bad situations. Some systems allow you to tie cameras to your technology so you can see what’s happening as it unfolds.

Display seals of an alarm system

Many experts argue that one of the most effective components of an alarm system is actually the signals that you place outside your home that you have them. These include stickers on your door and the small placards that you place in front of your home. Sometimes a simple “protected by X security system” is enough to dissuade an unmotivated criminal from breaking into your home. Also place decals on your doors, which is the most common place that thieves enter.

Focus on windows and doors

Your windows and doors are the most vulnerable entry points to your home. If your windows are older or have failing lock mechanisms, it may be time to consider an upgrade. Any residential grade window, such as those available from Gilkey, will meet the minimum requirements. Reinforce doors with high quality locks and deadbolts. Look for Grade 1 deadbolts, which are the most secure options on the market.

Use lighting to good effect

Most burglars don’t want to hit a home when people are inside. Use lighting and TVs – set on timers if needed – to give the illusion that you’re home even when someone is out. Exterior motion lights can be enough scare someone off and give you warning if someone is approaching your property. Both of these solutions are inexpensive and simple to install.

Get friends or hire companies to help

If you’re away on vacation or a business trip, simple tricks can make it seem like you are home. Obvious clues can be as simple as garbage that’s not out on pickup day or mail accumulating on your porch. Ask a friend or neighbor to stop by and help with that. If you’re going to be away for an extended period of time, hire someone to mow the lawn so that the yard is cared for.

Look for the obvious ways to diffuse temptation

If you have a second car, keep it parked in the driveway. Always lock your car and keep the windows rolled up, and never store valuable items in your vehicle. You may even want to consider a steering wheel lock if you’re in a high crime region. Trim any landscaping such as bushes or trees that might be easy to hide behind. Never leave a note on your door or a message on your answering machine saying that you’re away. Think about the signs criminals would look for and try to eliminate these to make their jobs harder.

Home security is worth taking seriously. But investing in a burglar alarm isn’t enough. Instead, think strategically about purchases and home improvements, and you’ll be well on your way to a safe and secure home.

About the author: Bailey Monahan is a home security specialist that teach self-defense and home security techniques. She writes about her experiences to help other people better protect what they love.