Believe it or not, there’s a burglary in the United States approximately every 23 seconds. This means your home is almost always at-risk, even if you live in a relatively safe neighborhood.
While some homeowners and renters are able to protect their house with an expensive alarm and security system, it’s not always an option. Landlords won’t let them get installed and those ongoing monthly service fees really add up.
If you’re like most people, you’re starting to wonder how to secure your home without an alarm system. Luckily, it’s easier than you might think.
Here are a few simple steps to follow.
Re-Key the House
When you buy a house or move into a new-to-you rental, you have no way of knowing who has copies of the keys. This puts your belongings and your loved ones at risk.
As soon as you move into a new home, get the locks re-keyed. This will guarantee that the original keys won’t work. The process is easier and cheaper than replacing the locks entirely and most landlords allow it, even if they won’t pay for it.
Keep in mind that once you re-key the home, you’ll need to create new spare keys.
Invest in High-Quality Locks
Your home’s exterior doors are the most common point of entry for would-be thieves. Many of them are even brave enough to walk right up to the front door to see if it’s locked at all.
If it is, they may move on to another home. But they’re just as likely to try to break the lock and get inside.
When it comes to door locks, you get what you pay for. Higher-quality locks cost more, but they’re more effective and can withstand thieves’ attempts to pick or break them.
Check Your Windows
All it takes is a few seconds for a thief to slip inside an open window. Once they do, they’ll have full access to your home.
Before you leave your house, check the windows both on the ground level and any upper stories. Make sure they’re locked and secured against anyone breaking in.
If you find that you’re missing a lock or that the windows just aren’t shutting right, get them fixed as soon as possible. You can also use a half-inch diameter wooden dowel cut to the size of the window frame as a backup measure.
Jamming the dowel between the window and the frame will keep it from opening from the outside. This shouldn’t be your primary security method, but it can help keep break-ins from happening when combined with quality window locks.
Use a Security Camera
Even with high-quality locks in place, thieves and burglars can occasionally slip inside your home. When this happens, you’ll want to be able to give the police as much information about the theft as possible.
The easiest way to do it is to install a discreet security camera system throughout your home.
A camera light bulb that mimics the look of outdoor lights or one nestled at the base of a plant is a great way to add security. No matter what camera type you choose, look for one that connects to your Wi-Fi network and stores data on the cloud.
This way, you’ll never have to worry about losing important footage if the thief damages or steals your computer.
Pay Attention to Your Landscaping
Every thief looks for homes that are easy targets. These are the houses with tons of hiding places and shadowed areas in the yard.
Do what you can to eliminate those areas. Remove overgrown shrubs or prune them to make it easy to see what’s happening by your door at all times. Get rid of lawn decorations or furniture that thieves could use as ladders or toss into glass windows.
You’ll also want to work with an experienced landscaping company to install lights for your entryway and to completely illuminate your yard at night. Add lights around trees, the walkway, and your entryway at a minimum. Just make sure that you tell your contractor that the lights should help with both landscaping AND security.
This will help them create the perfect design for your home. As an added bonus, landscape lighting can significantly increase your home’s resale value should you need to move in the future.
Always Lock Your Garage
If you’re like most homeowners, you likely assume that your garage door is completely secure. While it’s true that garage doors are heavy and can be tough to lift without help from the motor, that doesn’t mean they’re necessarily secure.
Frost the glass on any windows into the garage. Add motion-sensing lights to the exterior and make sure the door closes all the way before you pull out of the driveway.
Remember, an open door is an invitation to thieves. If they can’t see what’s inside, they’re less tempted to waste time trying to break in.
Place Spare Keys In the Right Places
Everyone gets locked out of their house at some point. That’s why you make spare keys and hide them outside your house. Just make sure you hide them in the safest spot possible.
Instead of slipping it under the doormat, invest in a combination lockbox and place it on the side of your house. Give a copy of your key to a neighbor or leave a spare at work on your desk. This way, thieves won’t be able to access your spare key easily.
Stop Worrying About How to Secure Your Home without an Alarm
Home security is a priority, whether you own or rent your property. But if you’re like most people, figuring out how to secure your home without an alarm system in place is an absolute must.
Alarms are a hassle and don’t always deter thieves and break-ins in the first place. Use these tips to make your home safer, year-round, whether you’re there or away.
For more helpful tips to keep your home safe and in good shape, check out our latest posts.