Improving Your Home’s Security
The concept of home security has been around for centuries and remains top of mind for most current or prospective homeowners. The first security system was designed in the early 1700s by an English inventor who attached chimes to a door lock to alert him of an intruder. Fortunately, today’s home security technology far exceeds that of the door chime, and homeowners have an array of options when it comes to making a home safer. Since June is National Safety Month, now is the perfect time to reevaluate your home’s security.
Did you know a burglary occurs every 30 seconds in the US? And, if you’re thinking you are less at risk of a burglary living out in a rural area, rather than a big city, you might want to think again. Surprisingly, burglaries are much more common in rural areas than in larger metropolitan locations. Lucky for you, there are endless options to choose from when selecting a security system for your home. A popular and effective trend is installing a doorbell camera, so you can be alerted of any visitors to your home on your mobile device. Many potential burglaries have been thwarted due to the homeowner being alerted of an intruder via video and being able to act fast. Whether you are splurging for a package with all the bells and whistles or aiming for something with basic security, make sure to do your research and find a trusted and reputable company that will ensure you are choosing the best option for your home.
If a security system is not your cup of tea or maybe not in your budget, no problem! There are plenty of ways to protect your home easily and on a budget. This can be as simple as upgrading door locks to a high-grade residential lock or installing deadbolts or kick plates to doors as added security. Another useful tactic to beef up security is to install motion-activated lights on your property, making you more aware of any outdoor activity and giving intruders fewer hiding spots. The key areas you want to add lighting to are all home entrances, walkways, garages and any open pool or garden areas. Most of the items needed for these methods can be purchased at any local or big-box hardware store.
Believe it or not, your home’s landscaping can even play a part in security. Large bushes or shrubbery in front of doors or windows provides an intruder a hiding spot while trying to pry them open. Keeping bushes low and trimmed can prevent this from happening, especially if you choose a thorny bush.
One of the best things you can do as a homeowner is get to know your neighbors. By creating relationships with those around you, your neighbors will be more inclined to keep an eye on your home and alert you of any suspicious activity. A major red flag to criminals is when mail, newspapers or other delivers go untouched outside of a home. It will be especially helpful if you are able to find a trusted neighbor who can watch your home and collect any mail or deliveries while you are away.
The summer months are a peak travel time for many, which means thieves are on the lookout for unsuspecting homeowners who have left their home for a vacation. Leaving a porch light on while you’re gone may seem like a good idea, but if it stays on all day and all night, it is a dead giveaway that no one has been home. A great option is to add timers to lights in a few rooms of your home, so it is never sitting dark. These can be easily purchased for around $20 and don’t aren’t hard to install.
All in all, when it comes to keeping your home safe, it is best to prepare for the worst-case scenario and be thankful later when you don’t fall victim to a property crime. Being proactive with your home’s security can not only prevent the headache that comes with criminal activity, but also, and most importantly, it will ensure you are keeping your home and your loved ones safe.
By: Meghan Boyles
Meghan is a mortgage marketing representative for Ameris Bank. Born and raised a Tar Heel, Meghan graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied Marketing and Public Relations. Meghan currently resides in Atlanta, GA. In her free time, Meghan enjoys exploring Atlanta with her pup Brody and watching Carolina basketball.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. Ameris Bank is not affiliated with nor endorses any of the companies featured in this article.