One of the main factors you have to consider when finding a place to stay is security. You need to be sure that you, your family and your property are safe from any criminal elements. But if you are working with a smaller budget, then you might have to settle for a neighbourhood whose security is not as assured as you might have preferred.
Sometimes, getting a good price on your home means living in a shifty part of town. Even if the neighbourhood seems nice and friendly, countryside homes can be a concern. If you’re used to living in an apartment, being in the suburbs or peri-urban region can be a culture shock. With your neighbours being further away and the neighbourhood being so quiet and empty, you’re likely to be uneasy.
Luckily, there are steps that you can take to secure your home if you are not so sure of your neighbourhood’s safety. Most of these solutions have a sort of common sense element, but you need to be careful and ensure that you, your family, and your possessions are kept safe from potential criminals.
Keep your home locked at all times. Check all your doors, windows, and external gates before you leave the house. Most incidents of insecurity are opportunistic. Criminals look for easy targets and take advantage of the mistakes most homeowners make. Ensure that your family members, especially the younger children, understand the importance of locking all external doors and gates when leaving your property.
Of course, not all criminal activity is driven by the resident’s oversight. When your home is under threat by a committed criminal, it can be hard to defend yourself. Sometimes, you can’t keep the criminals out, but you can buy yourself some time. Making it harder for them to gain entry could save your life. If nothing else, it’ll give you (or your neighbours) time to call the police.
One of the biggest weak points for any home is the garage. This is especially true for homes that have an access door which links the main residence to the garage unit. To reinforce this vulnerability, you could install roller shutters. They create a security system that can be automated. This way, you don’t have to worry about losing your keys or having someone take a crowbar to your padlock. Modern technology can incorporate your unlocking mechanism with your mobile devices.
Not all security measures are related to the robustness of your locking mechanism. The human element needs to be factored in when securing your home. Many times, the people you let into your home can prove to be security risks. Criminals often ‘case’ a house to scope it out for valuables, entry points, and helpful information they can use to breach it.
While it’s impossible to vet all the people in your family’s life, your security will significantly improve if the members of your family know that strangers are not allowed in the house. Any person that does not have a direct relationship with a member of your family should not be let in.
You should also take steps to ensure that you do not prominently expose any items of value. It’s impractical to hide the TV or sound system, but treasured possessions like jewellery or heirlooms shouldn’t be displayed in the living room. You may want to show them off, but they’re a beacon for thugs. Any obvious display of opulence can encourage malicious guests to turn on you.
Another step that you can take is to secure your windows. Most people focus on their doors, but in a dodgy neighbourhood, even your chimney is a risk. Place security grills on your windows, laundry chutes, and any other opening. You may even have to rethink the cat flap. The most important thing to consider when securing your home is vigilance. One simple mistake could be the difference between a secure home and a burgled household.