For many homeowners, their home is their castle. It's a fact that castles have sophisticated security in place, including armed guards, high walls, barred windows, a drawbridge, a moat, and, in medieval times, hot boiling oil — ready to pour on the heads of any marauders who made it to the gate.
Luckily, we've come a long way since the Middle Ages. Even so, your home may be at risk of a break-in or other intrusion. How can you know? A & E Security and Electronic Solutions offers these Top Five Tips for assessing security risks to your castle.
Home Security Tip #1: Close the Curtains
Burglars may case your house for several days before breaking in. If you leave your curtains open, criminals can peer inside to see if you have any desirable property they can steal.
Although most burglaries occur during the day while homeowners are at work, leaving your curtains open at night can provide a long-distance view into your home, especially if there are lights on.
Solution: This vulnerability is easily remedied. Keep your curtains closed when you’re not home, and be mindful about leaving them open when you’re inside.
Home Security Tip #2: Lock Your Doors
This seems like a no-brainer, but a surprising number of people leave their doors unlocked, especially during the day. While you may believe your neighborhood is safe, don't risk leaving your door unlocked, making it simple for burglars to get in. Additionally, burglars may search for that spare key you’ve “hidden” under the doormat or planter.
Solution: Keep your doors locked at all times. Even when you are home, the last thing you want is to find a stranger in your house looking to steal or commit more egregious crimes. Leave a spare key in a less obvious location — if you've seen it in a movie, it's not a great hiding place. You may even consider buying an electronic lock, requiring a passcode to unlock.
Home Security Tip #3: Install a Video Doorbell
Many burglars break in through the front door during the day. Plus, with more consumers online shopping, package theft is rising. Faced with a security camera or being caught on tape, criminals will think twice about targeting your home. In fact, a 2016 study found that about 2/3 of burglars are deterred by the presence of security cameras.
Solution: Today, video doorbells are more affordable than ever. They can be installed as a standalone, or can be integrated with a home security system. Even better, you can choose a camera that can be monitored via an app on your smart phone from wherever you are, so you can see anyone at your doorstep, day or night.
Home Security Tip #4: Use Outdoor Lighting
Even though most burglaries take place during the day, the most frightening crimes may occur at night, when you and your family are home, asleep, and off-guard. Don't let the cover of darkness make you a target.
Solution: Turn your porch light on at night. Install motion-activated lights in your yard and driveway. These devices are inexpensive and readily available at your local hardware store. A sudden light may deter a burglar, as well as provide a lighted path for anyone arriving home after dark.
Security Tip #5: Invest in a Home Security System
A security system serves as a warning to burglars to stay away from your property. A 2016 SafeWise study found that homes without a security system are three times more likely to be robbed than homes with a system.
Solution: A home security system can help reduce the risk of a break-in and help protect your family and property. Many security systems can be armed and monitored through an app on your smart phone, and can also alert you to fire, carbon monoxide, and other potential hazards, no matter where you are. Posted yard signs and window decals warn burglars your home is protected.
According to the FBI, a burglary occurs every 23 seconds in the U.S., and the average loss is about $2,500. Some property can be replaced, but for those irreplaceable items, it makes good sense to invest in a security system that not only may afford you a discount on your home insurance, but may cost less than your deductible and spare you the violation and inconvenience of a break-in.
You wouldn't knowingly put your loved ones or property in harm's way. And while you may consider yourself a cautious homeowner, it pays to be hyper-vigilant and protect your home with a security system, cameras, and locks.
Once you have these precautions in place, you can spend less time worrying about protecting your castle and more time enjoying your kingdom.
Contact us today at: (503) 883-4131 to schedule a free Home Security Inspection.