5 Ways to Protect Your New Home on a Budget
Did you know that a break-in occurs every 14.6 seconds in the United States? While a high-tech home security system sounds great in theory, your newly empty bank account is likely not so thrilled about the purchase. The good news is you don’t have to spend a lot to keep your home safe.
If state-of-the-art technology is out of your price range, these budget-conscious security hacks will offer peace of mind without draining your wallet.
Be Strategic with Your Landscape Design
The front yard is a home’s first line of defense against intrusion. As you design your yard the way you’d like, keep the dual purpose of landscaping in mind: enhancing your curb appeal and deterring would-be trespassers. Start with bushes and hedges—keep them trimmed, small and low to the ground: “Burglars are more likely to target houses with coverage like bushes and shrubs | 5 Ways to… Click To Tweet explain to security experts at Phoenix Lockmaster, who also suggest that this makes it easier for neighbors to spot suspicious activity if you’re not home.
Other landscaping ideas that boost security include:
- Gravel around the perimeter of the house, rather than a flower bed or mulch, make it easier to hear if someone is walking around.
- Cacti around the entrances of your home.
- Prickly bushes in front of windows.
Reinforce the Doorjambs on All Entryways
The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors estimates that a surprising 34 percent of crooks enter through the front door. Not to mention, most are capable of lock-picking which means it’s not enough just to upgrade your deadbolts, which you’ve likely already done as the new homeowner. Rather, you need to make sure the doorjambs are secure.
Reinforcement hardware can be found at the local home improvement store, and you can even do the installation yourself in 1 to 2 hours. To complete this project, you need a tape measure, bi-metal hole saw, drill bit and cordless driver, wood screws and reinforcing plates. For a step-by-step tutorial on how to manually secure the doorjambs against being kicked in, follow these instructions from the Family Handyman blog.
Click here to download
Find Creative Places to Hide Your Valuables
On average, a burglarized home suffers $2,251 in property loss, based on data from the FBI. This means it’s imperative that keep your valuables hidden in locations that most intruders wouldn’t think to search. Leaving cash, electronic devices, jewelry and other sought-after items in predictable or accessible hiding spots leaves you vulnerable, even with a security system in place.
Instead outsmart a potential thief by stashing valuables in areas they wouldn’t expect and might even overlook. While doing other renovations, make time to build a secret compartment under the stairs, hollow out the space behind a wall-mounted TV or disguise a safe deposit box as a picture frame.
Cover Your Garage Windows
Many homeowners forget that a garage isn’t just for parking the car. It can also serve as a point of entry for intruders. The first step in keeping this area safe is closing and locking the garage door—which is a task in itself: “Oh no, did I close the garage door before I left?” is something you’ll likely ask yourself dozens of times.
The second stop is making it impossible for intruders to see what’s inside, which could entice them to break-in: “A simple deterrent is to frost or otherwise cover your garage windows. This prevents anyone from looking to see if you have valuables in there. In addition, it prevents them from seeing whether or not you’re home,” according to Prevent Break-Ins With Simple Garage Security.
If a burglar is uncertain of your whereabouts, or whether the break-in is worth it, they’re less likely to force entry.
Install Time Programmed Lights
You can’t always be home to keep it safe—which is why the most common time for break-ins is 10am to 3pm, when you’re not there. Instead of installing motion activated lights, use time-programmed lighting that turns on an off randomly throughout the day. This a makes it hard for potential burlgars to determine if you’re home or not. Make sure the lights go on throughout the night as well, taking away the security of darkness for burlgars.
Boost Security on a Budget
Keeping your home, belongings and family safe doesn’t have to come with an expensive price tag. Use these cost-effective strategies to reduce the pressures and stress of keeping your new home safe. Instead, you can focus instead on personalizing the space, creating memories and building a life inside those four walls you call home.