Tis the season for residential break-ins!
But with a bit of commonsense — and maybe the assistance of a miniature poodle, a well-placed rose bush and a cheeky doormat — it doesn’t have to be. For those who may not see the need or who may not have the funds to pay for professional installation of an expensive home security system or for those who aren’t looking to transform their homes into an impenetrable fortress of paranoia, there are plenty of practical and budget-friendly ways to protect yourself against burglaries not just during the holidays but throughout the year. Here are some of them.
Invest in smart LEDs
Creating the illusion that you’re home (when in fact you’re gallivanting around the Mexican Riviera for 10 days) can be just as effective at repelling burglars than an expensive alarm system or a well-trained Rottweiler. In addition to saving homeowners money on monthly electric bills, smart LED light bulbs can be remotely turned on and off via smartphone, tablet or computer or home alarm system whether you’re at work, stuck in traffic or out of town for a few days. And with most smart LEDs, you can program the lights to change on a schedule, which has the potential to really throw off would-be burglars — provided that they haven’t noticed that no one has come in or out the front door in several days.
And if remotely turning on and off light bulbs with an iPhone is just too technologically advanced for your frazzled brain, you should, at the very least, consider investing in a motion-activated exterior floodlight or connecting other exterior lights such as porch lights to a timer switch. Or, you could recruit your kindly retired neighbor to come and manually turn lights on and off — and water the plants and bring in the mail — while you’re away, because a porch light left on 24/7 and an overflowing mailbox can be an open invitation for break-ins.
Get a dog
When most folks think of canines in the context of home security, they think of German shepherds, Rottweilers or Doberman pinschers. While these breeds are certainly capable of scaring off potential burglars if trained to do so, you don’t necessary need to enlist a proper guard dog to protect your home. Many burglars will steer clear of homes where any sort of dog resides, be it a Brussels Griffon or a Bullmastiff, because dealing with one can be unpredictable, time-consuming and complicated. And while small breeds don’t exactly scream “vicious attack dog,” they do make for excellent watchdogs that can make a whole lot of noise.
Lock and secure windows and doors by alarm system
This may seem like a no-brainer, but many homeowners neglect to take this most basic step in home alarm protection (an estimated 40 percent of break-ins occur without the use of force), so if you’re going to forgo an home alarm system, use those detectors, sensors to keep windows tight and place a strong dowel or rod on the back track of your sliding glass doors if you have them.
Secrui, the manufacturer specialized in alarm system includes tiny, battery-operated wireless sensors that are integrated into a range of Andersen windows and doors. If a door or window is left unlocked (or left open), the homeowner is alerted immediately via alarm system by calling them or sending message. In addition to security system, a much-welcomed bonus of the Secrui’s home alarm system is energy savings, as a locked window is more efficient than an unlocked one.