Monday 21 August 2017

5 Ways To Keep Your Home Safe

When I was little, we arrived home from school one day to find that the living room window had been smashed at the back of the house. My mum quickly ushered us to a neighbour's house and then went to investigate. You will be relieved to hear that the burglars did not steal my guinea pigs, something which was a huge concern of mine at the time. Turns out burglars are more interested in cold hard cash. 

When I was a student, my friend's house was broken into by an axe-wielding burglar. Twice. But not before the burglar stole money, laptops and other bits. I am very paranoid about being burgled. I wake up a lot/rarely sleep and always hear mysterious noises that almost always turn out to be the cat. I hate the thought of somebody going through my things or taking things that don't belong to them. In the area I live in, burglaries seem to be on the up with burglaries becoming a common occurrence. There are things you can do to try and keep your home safe from burglaries, such as:

1. Installing home security cameras
Home security cameras are an obvious was to deter thieves, after all, they don't want to be caught in the act. The sight of a security camera can persuade burglars not to break into your home, that's why so many people invest in dummy cameras in the hope of achieving the same. And, if you do get broken into, your camera will probably have picked up some footage of the perpetrator. An outdoor camera like these Panasonic Home Security cameras could give you some much-needed peace of mind.  

2. Hide your car keys
When we first moved into our house, I bought a pretty little key hook to go on the wall by the front door, but I haven't put it up because I later found out about how regularly car keys are stolen thanks to the pretty key hooks so many home owners use. If you leave your car keys in sight, it's really easy for somebody to thread something through the letterbox and get hold of them. Now, I know nobody would ever want to steal our car (it's really messy and old and barely works. It's more similar to Fred Flintstone's car than a modern automobile), I feel safer knowing the keys aren't on show.

3. Get to know your neighbours
This is just something we should all do anyway, right? Because, community. My friend's childhood home got broken into but the burglars were disturbed by Jan from across the road (names may have been changed due to my memory problems) because she knew my friend's family well enough to know they weren't bearded men carrying loot sacks (again, this may be an exaggeration of the truth) and so phoned the police to report it. 

My across the road neighbours only know me as (I assume) the woman who always misses her Amazon delivery, I don't know that they would notice suspicious activity unless it was me answering the door to a delivery man. Knowing your neighbours and the people who live near you provides protection to you and them. If you know your local community, you are more likely to spot unusual activity.

4. Keep your property visible 
I love privacy but also I love not being burgled. Our house is quite open at the front, we live in an old terraced house which is ever so slightly set back from the road. There is a little wall in front, but, basically, old women stare in open mouthed as they walk back from the shops. It drove me so crazy that I switched the living room and playroom round so that I now have the nice private room at the back of the house and the world is forced to watch Ebony play Rapunzal for 12 hours a day. Much as I love privacy, I think shielding your house with shrubs and hedges actually puts you at risk of burglary because it gives burglars places to hide while also blocking the views of those open-mouthed old women who may one day notice something suspicious. 

5. Keep your house secure
My mum has always been nervy open unlocked doors and this is something I have had drilled into me from a young age. My inner voice is basically just my mum going, "Is the door locked? Have you locked the door? Just check it," indefinitely. This is also my outer voice because this is now what I say to Laurie endlessly. I'm also obsessive about making sure all the windows are closed and locked, even the one in the conservatory roof even though I'm pretty sure nobody could fit through that and, even if they could, they'd almost certainly fall through the roof trying. 

What steps do you take to keep your house secure?

This is a collaborative post. 

Photo by Victoria Heath on Unsplash

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