How secure is your home, really? When was the last time you stopped to consider security, and figure out what you needed to do to protect yourself and your loved ones? Home security doesn’t have to involve expensive surveillance systems, panic rooms, and high tech alarms. There are lots of small, simple, but effective steps that you can take to make your home safer including calling a residential locksmith:
Think Like a Crook
If you left home without your keys, how would you get back in? If you know that all the conservatories in your neighborhood have weak locks, there’s a good chance a burglar would know that too. Take measures to fix those problem spots.
Take a look at your house during the day, and another look at night. Try to find areas that are dark and difficult to see from the street – these are the areas that criminals would use if they wanted to be able to work on entering your property without passers-by noticing what they’re doing. Professional locksmiths use this tactic frequently. Once you’ve identified those areas, invest in motion-sensitive or timer based lights to act as a deterrent.
Talk To Your Neighbors
The best ally you have in the fight against opportunistic crime is your neighbors. Get to know them, and they’ll keep an eye on your home for you. If you are going on holiday, let them know. If they’re going away for a while, keep an eye on their property for them.
Communities with an active Neighborhood Watch program tend to have lower crime rates than communities without such a program. Most criminals are opportunists, and if they think that it’s too risky to break into your home, then they’ll move on to an easier target.
Think carefully before handing out keys to your neighbors, and don’t ever a key “under the plant pot”, or anywhere else out in the open. No matter how much you trust your friends and neighbors, they’ll never be as careful about your property as you are. A local locksmith can help you identify weak spots in your security. The fewer people that have access to your home, the better.
Don’t Advertise Big Purchases
If you’ve just bought a posh flat-screen TV, by all means, show it off to your close friends, but don’t tell the whole world! Instead of leaving the box out on the street for several days, flatten it or cut it up and put it in the bin – or, even better, take it to the recycling center yourself.
The same is true for holidays – don’t broadcast your plans to take a two-week long cruise. Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare are a great hunting ground for thieves looking for easy targets. If they see photos of your gorgeous new TV, and then see a check-in at the airport, that’s basically an invitation for a robbery. A residential locksmith will be able to show you tips to secure your home whilst you are on vacation.
Get Locks for Your Windows
Even modern UPVC windows often have disappointingly weak thumb locks. If you can afford to update those to proper locks that have a deadbolt, then you should do so as soon as possible. Keep the key close to the window, but not somewhere that is visible from outside the house.
If you can’t afford to get a professional residential locksmith to fit proper locks, consider improvising – drill a thin hole into each window sash at a 45-degree angle to the window, and put a nail into it, leaving just enough sticking up to a) prevent the window from opening, and b) allow you to pull the nail out in the event of an emergency.
This article was written by James Harper on behalf of Stormclad, fitters of conservatories and UPVC windows. Visit their site to see how you can have UPVC windows or a conservatory for your home.