Look around the room you’re in right now – try and think how much all of its contents worth. A few hundred? Several thousand? Perhaps even more? If all of the possessions in your home were cash instead of TVs, laptops and mobile phones then you wouldn’t be lax on keeping such a large amount under lock and key.
But the truth is that for potential burglars, they don’t see your personal possessions – they see potential mounds of cash, just waiting to be slipped out from right under your nose. These five essential home security tips will help you keep everything you hold dear safe – whether it’s your iPad, or just a pot of money you were saving for a holiday.
1. Install CCTV Surveillance In Or Around Your Home
Far from being an expensive luxury that is reserved purely for business, home CCTV systems are becoming incredibly affordable with web-based storage systems offering the lowest costs. A really high end system might cost a few hundred, but will obviously offer the best surveillance for in or around your home.
Alternatively, cheap wireless IP cameras can be found for roughly a tenth of the cost of a fully-fledged home CCTV system. Connected to your home’s wireless internet, they can be hooked up to motion sensors and placed around your front or back doors to capture criminals in the act and store the footage securely online.
2. Keep Some Valuables In Your Kitchen
Research has shown that the kitchen is the last place burglars will typically go, as there’s rarely anything of worth in this room; they’re tight on time and your George Foreman Grill is hardly going to be worth stealing over cash or jewellery. Store car keys or pots of cash in washed-out soup cans or old cereal boxes to avoid detection, and keep them inside a cupboard rather than a shelf.
Chances are that, even if your home is broken into, valuables kept in your kitchen will escape the criminal’s clutches.
3. Ensure Entrances Are Fully Secure
Every door and window in your home is an access point for criminals looking to rummage through your home and take away whatever they fancy. Poorly installed doors or windows, as well as cheap, ineffective locks, are all chinks in your home security’s armour.
When it comes to new doors and windows in your home, or upgrading the locks, this is an area where you simply can’t skimp on quality. Premium locks or window designs might cost more in the short term, but they can prevent thieves getting easy access to your home and will save you the cost of replacing all your possessions.
4. Be Careful What You Throw Away
Not all thieves are opportunists – career criminals, whether amateurs or pros, will often ‘case’ a property to ensure that it’s worth breaking into. Casually throwing away the box for your new cooker or that big 40” flatscreen TV might not seem like a risk, but it’s a huge advert to potential burglars letting them know that you’ve got some really great, expensive equipment in your home – and there’s likely to be more inside.
Pack down boxes into recycling bins or make sure you recycle the packaging yourself, rather than leaving it on the street by your bins.
5. Timers Are Your Friend
Timer switches are a great, affordable way to improve your home’s security without spending loads of money. For the same price as the cheapest IP surveillance camera you can buy around 10 timer switches to place throughout your home.
These can be set to power devices on and off at set times of the day to make it appear like someone is home – something that potential thieves will hate. You can use them for everything from lamps to radios and TVs – whatever devices will make your home look occupied. Be sure to change the times on a regular basis so it’s hard to spot a timed pattern. Unable to tell the difference between a timed lamp and someone manually turning, intruders will be deterred and leave your house alone.
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