If you`re a homeowner, you may well worry about how secure your property really is. Thieves can target your valuables and even if you feel you live in a reasonably safe area, there`s always the threat of burglary. Homeowners can, however, take steps to reinforce their household security and protect against criminals.
Think first about your doors. These are an obvious point of entry and while a lock may help, you`ve got to consider that a determined thief will find other – often more simple – ways of getting through a door. The right door material, such as fibreglass, will protect a door against forced entry in situations where wood simply won`t. And watch out for doors that can easily be physically removed, such as dated sliding patio doors.
Windows are also an easy access point for burglars and an area that really requires your attention. Again, the type of material used for the windows can make a difference. Add safety glass to windows for enhanced durability, making it harder for intruders to physically smash their way in. Security screens are useful too, as they make it tough for thieves to gain access and often prove a deterrent to would-be burglars. While window bars may also help.
Your home security doesn`t begin or end inside your house. Consider what`s visible outside your house: if you have a bike and no shed, then think about where you`re locking it up. Tools and garden equipment may attract thieves if left in plain view and even if you do store possessions inside a shed or similar building, its locks are as vulnerable as those in your house.
You may even inadvertently create ways in which crooks can gain access to your home via outside areas. For instance, if you are using a ladder to paint a hard-to-reach place and then leave it out, a criminal could then use it to gain entry to an upper-floor window. So lock away any ladders or other equipment that could be misused in this way.
Enhancing your home security can sometimes be a case of simply creating deterrents to intruders. If you can`t afford or don`t want a home-security system or a guard dog, there`s nothing to stop you putting up signs that make it look as if you`ve got one. For example, some companies sell fake burglar alarm boxes for installation on the exterior of your house.
Trim hedges and trees. These denizens of your garden may look pretty but if they`re overly large, you`re simply creating extra cover that thieves can take advantage of when approaching your property.
Of course, you can have reinforced doors and windows made from the toughest materials, but if your locks aren`t up to much, your home will still be insecure. Handle locks are easy to pick with basic tools and should be avoided. Also think about where your keys are. Don`t leave them in easy-to-access locations and don`t lend out keys unless it`s really necessary, since doing so may come back to haunt you if a criminal gets hold of a spare key or is able to make a duplicate.
Add deadbolts to enhance the security of your locks. Deadbolts reinforce locks and can sometimes prevent access made through the use of duplicate keys. A door lock cylinder is useful here as it allows you to incorporate a deadbolt easily, alongside other types of lock you may choose to upgrade your house security with.