No one wants to be a victim of crime. No one requests to be robbed. But it happens nonetheless, and the truth is some homes are simply open invitations to thieves. Even though you may think your home is safe, it could be particularly vulnerable. Criminals, especially robbers, are opportunists. They make opportunities where you normally would not think there are any. As a homeowner, the best way to combat potential break-ins and robberies is to be one step ahead, to vanish all opportunities by being aware and being smart.
Beefing up your home security does not mean you have to plunk down a sizable amount of cash. People can and do spend thousands, hundreds of thousands and even millions on state of the art home security systems and fancy home alarms. But those types of systems are usually reserved for CEO's, heads of state and politicians. The average homeowner really need not have a home security system that costs a million dollars. That's just over the top.
A good place to start and a relatively cheap option, is to start a neighborhood watch program. Call up your local police or community organization and ask them for voters. They'll get started in the right direction. Neighborhood watch programs take little time-usually, a once a month meeting is scheduled-they are basically free, although you may want to spend a little on refreshments, and they work quite well. These programs foster a sense of community. Everyone has each other's backs. Suspicious activity is reported to the proper authorities, so no one is in any danger. It's a simple means of taking back a community and standing up against crime.
Within a home itself, there are a number of measures that can be taken to make it a safer place to live. Reinforcing all entries including windows is a good place to start. Using high quality, sturdy deadbolt locks, getting solid doors and installing peep holes are easy ways to fortify your home. Window locks are another must; Many people do not think about locking their doors as they would have their windows, but it is a very good habit to start. Many thieves get in by crawling through an open window, especially in the summer, when people tend to leave windows open all day and all night, even if they are not at home. Window locks are extremely easy to install and they are cheap. Some allow you to prop your window open a crack to let in fresh air but keep criminal elements out. Others come with keys. There's a lot of different options out there and they are definitely worth checking out.
Lighting is another important yet simple factor. A well lit home is a safer home. Thieves do not want to be scene. Install a few motion sensitive lights around your house and driveway. Also be sure to make sure all entries are well lit.
Finally, consider getting a home alarm system. These are becoming increasingly affordable and they work. Home alarms keep criminals at bay.