With the holidays upon us, many families will take a break from the humdrum of their normal working lives and visit with family and friends over this festive season. Unfortunately there are so many security risks involved when leaving your home unoccupied, whether for an hour or for a few days. There are several ways in which you can secure your home and ensure you have a stress free break.
We look at some of the ways in which you can ensure your house is secure this holiday season.
Protect Your Home with a Home Security System
- One of the biggest deterrents for would-be burglars is an alarm system.
- An installed burglar alarm makes a home less attractive to intruders.
- Call your home security company to let them know you’ll be away.
- Make sure all of the alarms in the house are set and working when you leave.
Reinforce or secure all doors
- Inspect all doors and windows.
- Replace easy to breach doors with solid-core (made of wood or metal) or metal-clad doors. Locks are the weakest point on a door.
- Make sure you have dead-bolt locks on all exterior doors. It’s not necessary to get one at a specialty locksmith; these can be purchased at any hardware retail store.
- Installing high quality retractable security doors for your home will make your house less attractive to criminals.
Reinforce or secure all windows
- Lock all the windows in your home.
- Replace normal glass windows with reinforced glass windows, such as tempered glass or laminated glass.
- To break through reinforced glass, a burglar would have to strike repeatedly in the same spot, creating a lot of noise – and thus proving to be an excellent thief deterrent.
- Fit burglar bars over all opening windows.
Remove garden tools and equipment
- All DIY equipment and garden tools should be put out of sight, or locked away in the garage or shed.
- Criminal often use ladders or tools, found in the yard, to gain entry into your home.
- Lighting is an essential part of securing your home as burglars will be less likely to approach a well-lit area.
- Keep the exterior of your home lit at night, not too brightly, but enough to expose someone trying to break into the house.
- Use lights with motion sensors where possible.
- Lights inside the home can be fitted to timers to come on at night, giving the appearance that someone is home.
Gates and Fencing
- An electric gate is considered more of a necessity than a luxury.
- If you have electric gates and an intercom system, ensure that visitors can reach the intercom without having to get out of their cars.
- Do not leave visitors waiting outside for longer than is absolutely necessary.
- Erecting a fence or security wall around your property will also go a long way in deterring would-be burglars.
- The correct fence will prevent or at least slow the progress of thieves trying to get onto your property.
- It can also make it difficult for burglars to steal heavy or large items from the home.
- Choose fencing that is hard to climb, such as palisade fencing.
Don’t Advertise Your Travel Plans
- Always attempt to get a house sitter for your home to ensure the house looks occupied, no mail gets piled up and lights are switched on and off at irregular hours.
- If you cannot get a house sitter, ask friends to collect your mail from your mailbox.
- Do not announce your travel plans to others.
- Request your neighbour to park in your driveway when the house is unoccupied. They should ensure there are no visible valuables in the car. This will make the house look occupied.
With these helpful tips in mind, you can ensure your home is secure and protected while you enjoy a well-deserved break over the holiday season.