The Need For Home Security
According to 2006 crime statistics in the United States, burglaries are on the rise and I don’t see anything that would convince me that they will not continue to rise in the years ahead. In fact burglaries account for about 22 percent of the estimated number of property crimes committed throughout the year. One has to wonder if there is any correlation to the number of burglaries with the increased number of arrests that are being made of offenders on drug related offenses. It has always been known that drug users are constantly looking for ways to support their habits. One way of course is to break into unprotected or poorly protected homes and apartments in their quest to find money and valuables that could easily be turned into a revenue source to pay for their next fix. So what can a home owner or apartment dweller do to reduce the chances of them becoming the next victim?
How many keys are there to your front and back doors? Over the years, who have you given them to? How many of those keys have been lost or stolen and the person who you entrusted with them has let is slip their minds to let you know? For that matter, are all the keys you have in your possession accounted for?
One would think that lock and keys would be a major instrument in securing your homes. You should think of this as locks having certain degrees of security attributed to them and having a limited number of keys of which you can account for, is what would determine their relative importance to your protection.
Do you know that people are still keeping a “hide-a-way” key under their door mats? I thought that idea would have gone by the wayside years ago. Most people in the United States realize we no longer live in a society where it is safe to keep their doors unlocked when they are away. Well hiding a key outside the door is not such a good idea either. Most burglars will make a quick check in areas close to the entry door for just such an invitation to come into the house. If you must keep a key outside the dwelling, you should find a place well away from the door where a reasonable person wouldn’t suspect that you would use.
You should also take a close look at the locks themselves. Consider the use of cylinder and tubular dead bolts and stay away from locking mechanisms that can be “jimmied” with a credit card. But don’t overlook the door itself. It doesn’t do a lot of good going out and buying a high security locking mechanism if you have a door that is made from a material that you could easily circumvent.
Look at other obvious entry ways into your home. Don’t forget your windows. Many people like to have their windows open on a nice day to let thing just air out. It is also nice to feel a cool breeze on an otherwise warm evening. But don’t let your security down. Make sure that you close those windows when you leave the house. Also look at the locks you have on them. A burglar is pretty desperate if they break into a home when their only recourse was to break glass. Glass has a pretty distinctive sound to it and it will alert neighbors that something is going on that shouldn’t be. Burglars are a pretty sneaky breed and want to get in and out without being noticed.
When conducting a survey of your property, you shouldn’t just focus on entryways to the home or building. You should also step back and take a look at the surrounding area as well. How many bushes are there on the property? How tall are they? How close are they to the home or structure itself? Burglars can use this type of foliage to hide in and in some cases actually enter the structure without being seen. If the home is more than one floor, don’t just consider the safeguards on the first floor as being sufficient for your protection. Burglars have been known to climb trees and ladders to gain access on floors above ground level.
Lighting has been referred to the best burglary prevention for the money. Although you may have heard of a number of daytime burglaries, the majority of break-ins occur during the hours of darkness. Having a well lit area at night is well worth the electricity it takes to keep them on. There are many styles of lighting that can be used. Two of the most popular styles are flood lights and spot lights. As their name implies, spot lights are used to direct lighting to a relative small area and flood lights are used light large open areas.