By Anita Ginsburg

Your home is your castle. This means that you and your family should feel safe there. Although you may not have a moat or drawbridge, you can make you home safe and secure with various home security strategies.

Related: Why Home Security is Crucially Important for Your Rental Property

Many of these strategies are inexpensive and easy for anyone to implement. While your needs will vary based on the type of home you own and your neighborhood, the following home security tips are some that you should consider:

Exterior Lighting
One of the easiest ways to protect your home from burglars is to have adequate exterior lighting. A would-be thief is much less likely to break into a home that is well lit because it makes it easier for neighbors and passersby to see them. When planning your exterior lighting, focus on the areas around the doors, including your garage door. Also, consider installing motion-activated lights on your deck/patio and front porch.

Windows Locks
Everybody knows the importance of locking your doors. However, it’s also equally important to lock up your windows. All windows that open on the ground level should have a locking mechanism. If they don’t, you can place a heavy-duty rod between the sliding window and frame to prevent it from opening. Keeping the screens on your windows will also help because it’s one more barrier between the outside and your home’s interior.

Security Doors
Front doors seem solid, but they can be relatively flimsy and easily breached by a determined thief. Security doors are heavy-duty and made from thicker, stronger woods or even aluminum. Additionally, the frames around these doors are generally made with steel or something similar. The doors also feature multiple locking bolts that securely lock the door to the frame, making it almost impossible to break open. The best part is these doors look like normal front doors you’d see on any house.

Security Cameras and Alarm System
Security cameras work as a great deterrent, but if someone does try to get into your home, they can also help police identify that person. Cameras should be placed at each house entrance and around the garage area.

Alarm systems are either standalone or are part of an alarm network with home monitoring. Both are highly effective at scaring off intruders. Alarms come with motion detectors, sensors for doors and windows, as well as motion-activated security cameras. If you have a standalone alarm system, be sure to test the components often so you know it’s in good working order.

Home Automation
Home automation systems can make your home look like someone is living there even when you’re on vacation. These systems can automate lights and home temperature. You can also be notified if your smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector goes off while you’re away.

One feature to look for in a home automation system is to randomize lights turning on and off in the mornings and evenings. If someone is stalking your neighborhood they’ll have a hard time knowing if someone is really home and will probably find an easier target.

While alarm systems, cameras and motion detectors help protect your home, you should also consider the smaller things. This includes making sure your mail gets picked up when you’re gone (or temporarily suspend service). Keep newspapers, fliers and packages off of your front porch. Nothing says “I’m not home” like having your porch littered with deliveries. Be sure to have a trusted neighbor or friend check your porch daily if you’re out of town!

Anita Ginsburg is a freelance writer from Denver, Colorado. She studied at Colorado State University and now enjoys writing about health, business and family. A mother of two wonderful children, she loves traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing. She recommends looking at security doors and other security options when updating your home. You can find her on Twitter @anitaginsburg.

This article first appeared on RISMedia’s blog, Housecall.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2021. All rights reserved.

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