The new year is just about in full swing: kids are going back to school, mum and dad are back at work, and the daily routine is starting to become habit again. Many of your friends and family have made resolutions to lose weight, get fit, or drink a little less wine, but have they made any home security resolutions?
Start your 2019 off on a safer foot with these 10 Home Security resolutions that can be the difference between life and death, if it comes to that.
If you have been dragging your heels with regards to the gardening, you may be doing your own family a disservice. Overgrown shrubs and bushes around your property perimeter, particularly the gate, are perfect hiding places for burglars and assailants. You are most vulnerable when entering your home, so take as much risk out of the equation as possible.
Trim your shrubs right back or remove them completely and substitute them for short, water-wise plants like xerophytes. This way, you are maintaining a pleasant landscape whilst minimising risk.
The next step in home security is to upgrade your alarm system to a smart home monitoring system. Select one that alerts you, the homeowners, and authorities of intrusions, fire emergencies, or spikes in carbon monoxide levels within the home.
This combines multiple emergencies in one system and allows you to stay aware of your home security wherever you are. Ask your security service provider for their best practices and select a system that meets your needs.
In South Africa, a lot of crime is based on opportunity and chance encounters. As such, it is increasingly important that the average person practices greater situational awareness. This mindset is based on being aware of who and what is around you at all times and adjusting your fight-or-flight reflex to suit the potential danger around you.
Check out our blog about avoiding hijacking with increased situational awareness.
Motion sensor lights are a great energy efficient crime deterrent for your home, and are a must have for your walkways, entry and exit points, as well as garage. Motion sensor lights will turn on for a couple seconds when something moves around in your property, and off again when the motion has subsided. This greatly deters burglars who don’t want to be caught like a deer in the headlights when approaching your home!
Your family and home can be put in danger from intangible means as well. With a [plethora of internet-enabled devices accruing in the modern home, we need to be more careful with how we use and protect these devices from nefarious forces.
Home assistant devices, bay monitors, security cameras, and Wi-Fi networks that reside in your premises can be at risk to hacks and cyber intrusions without the proper security. Make sure your home Wi-fi password is changed from its default to create a closed network. Install anti-virus software on your devices, especially if you want to do internet banking and the like.
Additionally, be careful with how you use social media. Posting the whereabouts of your children, your family, when you are on vacation, where you are every day, and even simple pictures of your children can all result in horrible consequences if they fall into the wrong hands.
As a homeowner, you may have bought your home twenty years ago, and rely on the same security solutions as were installed back then. Or worse, you are a recent homeowner and you haven’t tested your own security!
Consider upgrading your burglar bars (and possibly your window frames where applicable) to reinforce your home security. You can choose from cottage pane fittings to trellis fixtures and more, to fortify your home without compromising your personal style.
This one is more of a skill than a home security solution, but you may find it vital in emergencies. If an incident was to occur, you want to be prepared to help your friends and family. Having basic first aid training can be the difference between life and death after a home invasion, and your ability to stay calm could save a life.
Putting a couple lights on timers is particularly useful when you are out during the evenings or away from the home for a couple days. Most burglaries occur under the cover of darkness, and burglars are becoming wise to the old trick of leaving one or two lights burning the whole night long.
If someone really was at home, they would move from room to room every couple of hours, switching lights on and off along the way. Consider a more natural pattern of light use when setting timers. When the lounge light goes off, set a timer for a lamp upstairs to switch on soon after.
After large purchases or festive periods, be sure to tear up the packaging and place it in a bin bag, rather than turfing the box outside. You don’t want every Tom, Dick and Harry on the street to know that you just bought a lovely flat screen TV.
Unfortunately, crime is a reality, and your preparedness for it could reduce the risk and severity of incidents tenfold. Take the necessary precautions above to keep your family safe, and don’t become just another statistic. Contact us today to discuss the home security resolutions we can install for you.