Rising crime rates in cities all over the country have home owners worried about the security of their homes. The cities of Ferguson, Missouri and Baltimore, Maryland have seen increases in all sorts of crime related to the mistreatment of black citizens by white police officers. However, California, more specifically Los Angeles is also experiencing major rises in crime rates.
In Los Angeles County, overall crime rose by 12 percent over the first months of the year. Violent offenses rose by almost 20 percent, while property crime experienced a steady 10 percent raise. While much speculation exists about the reasons for the recent spikes in crime, the biggest reason may be the ballot passed to downgrade many drug crimes and thefts to misdemeanors, which means that heavy jail time is no longer a strong deterrent for criminals. Statistics like these are causing homeowners to question the security of their homes, and make changes to allow for heightened levels of security. Here are the 10 of the top ways to help secure your home against intruders.
- Security Systems
It might sound like the obvious answer here, but home security companies like ADT, protect households from burglaries, fire, carbon monoxide, and other threats to the safety and security of the household. While this won’t solve all criminal problems, a security system will help deter burglaries and notify the authorities.
- Mock Burglaries
One great way to ensure the safety of a home, is to throw a good ole’ fashioned burglary. Allowing a trusted individual to walk through your house and remove small-valuable items, can alert a family to what a burglar could be looking for, and what they could find easiest. Use this information to make all valuable items as secure as possible.
- Deterring Lighting
The lighting of the house can be a big deterrent to someone trying to break in. Motions sensed lighting outside provides a well-lit area that is difficult to hide. Additionally, when the lights are triggered by movement it creates the illusion that someone is home, and awake. Burglars aim for house that look like they have nobody home, make sure it looks like your home, even if you aren’t.
- Windows and Doors
Another obvious tip here, make sure that all windows and doors can be secured. Installing deadbolt locks on all doors make forced entry tougher. Additionally, Windows that are shatter proof, and feature their own set of locks make a burglary even more difficult. These are the easiest points of entry for an intruder, make sure they are secure.
- Deterring Signage
Regardless of if you have a security system, or a big scary dog signs that warn of these things can help keep your home safe just as much as a deadbolt on the door. Stickers that claim a security system is active can be very effective, however avoid stickers that reveal the specific security system, as this could reveal clues on how to gain entry.
- Hide Wealth
One thing that burglars look for is obvious signs of wealth. Homes with higher incomes are at increased risk because the items in those homes are more valuable. Don’t leave expensive items out to tip off someone that may want to rob you.
While many security systems involve the use of some cameras inside the home, extra cameras can’t hurt when it comes to securing your home. Outside cameras that record activity and can alert those inside of visitors and intruders could deter intruders from coming in, but they’ll be more useful in the process of finding the intruder.
- Eliminate Hiding Spots
While better outside lighting will decrease the amount of hiding spots, there are other measure that can be taken to ensure you can see everything that goes on, on your property. By limiting heavy shrubbery and bushes, and keeping them well maintained you can cut down dramatically on the places someone has to hide.
- Talk to Neighbors
Many times home intruders know very specific details about the lives of those they are robbing. When the parents and children leave for work and school, and other details are important to burglars. Talking to neighbors and looking out for each other can help deter and capture criminals.
- Use the Police Wisely
While police forces have come under much scrutiny recently, they still exist to serve and protect. Many departments will do a home walk-through for free, where the officer points out weak parts of the home’s security and recommends small fixes that could decrease the attractiveness of your home to an intruder.