Those that have experienced home invasions, break-ins or robberies know all too well the tremendous emotional and financial impact it can have on your life. Though you can get insurance for the value of your belongings, you can’t replace their sentimental value. Even more significant is the impact it can have on your sense of personal security and privacy. The thought of a criminal going through your personal belongings, knowing they were going trough your bedroom, diaries, and who knows what else can leave you feeling extremely vulnerable.
In most cases, a homeowner can prevent burglary with some common sense measures. Some of these measures are so simple, yet surprisingly, most people don’t bother. Hence, the increasing degree of home burglaries.
It has always been known that most criminals do not want to be seen breaking and entering into a home. However, in recent years, burglars have become more brazen with daytime break-ins. Often they’ll call a home or knock on the door and if there is no answer, they’ll assume no one is home. That’s when they’ll break-in. Even then, they don’t want to be seen by nosy neighbours.
Homes that have enclosed veranda’s, tall hedges and other ornaments that block view of the doors and windows from neighbours are preferred targets for burglars. So, trim down or better yet remove shrubbery, trees and other items blocking your windows and doors.
Bright LED lights around the outside of your home are a strong deterrent for burglars. Even better are LED lights with motion sensors, because then it catches your attention and the attention of neighbours when a light comes on unexpectedly. Use several lights in a tiered field approach. For example, near the home the LEDs stay on and then at certain access points or perimeters of the property used LED lights with motion sensors. That way the burglars know everything is well lit and in case they still try to approach they’re surprised by the unexpected extra LEDs turning on.
Sometimes burglars will stake out your home for days, recording your patterns and those of neighbours before breaking in. In that situation, the lights and visibility will not work. Then you have to go to the second stage of defense with hardware. Heavy duty metal doors or Doors reinforced with metal are much more difficult to break into than most popular doors. By the time a burglar breaks through one of these doors, the whole neighbourhood would have heard the commotion. They’re more expensive but when you’re facing the possibility of an armed intruder or burglar, you’ll wish you had installed them. Just remember that you also have to get the reinforced door frame, otherwise the door won’t hold.
The quickest and easiest way to increase your security is by upgrading your entry door locks and bolts. In the past lock companies focused on avoiding being picked open, now with burglars simply kicking doors open, they seem to be focused more on the mechanical engineering. Look for things liked thicker and longer bolts that lock into the frame, larger and longer screws that secure the both receptacle into the frame, expanded metal plates for the frame and wrap-around and extended metal braces for the door itself.
Then there are the traditional deadbolts which are well-used in cities like New York and which seemed to have been more used in Toronto’s days past. However, they are effective, especially when used with reinforced frames and doors. These will make it harder to kick in the door without having to replace the whole door.
Over the last few years the design of security cameras has significantly improved with increased sharpness, night vision and even internet access. You can get them in wired or wireless format. The price has dropped significantly over the last 3 years and you can now get a complete 4 camera with internet connectivity for as little as $300 Canadian. Some of these cameras allow you to identify zones on your property which if movement is detected it’ll set off the alarm, email, text you or all three. You can then check out the cameras’ live feed through your mobile app or even search past video footage.
These security cameras may not stop every break-in, but it will deter some of them and even help police in catching the burglars and perhaps recovering your property. It also helps with your insurance claim and may even help lower your insurance premiums.
The sooner you start implementing these measures, the sooner you’ll have greater home security and piece of mind. Stay safe in your home sweet home and sleep well at night.
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