In today’s economy, you might find it difficult to shell out tons of cash to make your home more secure. But a tight budget doesn’t have to be an excuse for leaving your home unsafe. In fact, there are many home security measures to take that will cost you close to nothing or nothing at all.
Measures to Take When Away:
One of the easiest times for a burglar to break in is while you’re away for an extended period. At the same time, it’s one of the easiest times to make more secure without spending a dime.
First, don’t let your mail and newspaper pile up while you’re away. Stacks of envelopes are a clear sign that no one’s home (and probably won’t be for a while). You could suspend delivery while you’re away. Even better, ask your neighbor to pick everything up for you. Seeing regular deliveries tricks a would-be burglar. Likewise, have someone cut your lawn or shovel snow if you’re gone for a long time.
Don’t announce on Facebook, Twitter, or any social media site that you’re away. Sure, it’s tempting to put up that excited status—but anyone who sees it knows they have a clear house.
Day to Day:
Of course, you spend most of your time at home. There are countless ways to secure your home on the cheap while you’re there. Always lock your deadbolts when you go out, and don’t hide a key outside. If you’re afraid of losing your key, leave a spare with someone you trust.
Don’t allow anyone you don’t know inside to use the phone. If you really feel like doing something for them, offer to make the call yourself.
Purchasing security equipment always goes a long way. So make sure you hide any security alarm panels that may be located outside to avoid tampering.
Tags and Labels:
Tags and labels are easy for you to overlook but ideal signals for a robber. Don’t permanently label your luggage with your home address—it’s an open invitation.
Likewise, don’t program your home address in you GPS. If someone breaks into your car while you’re out, they can continue straight to your house. Instead, put in a nearby public address, like a local police station.
Bring in the Reinforcements:
Now that you’ve taken simple measures to deter burglars, you still can reinforce your home for the chance that someone makes it to the house anyway. An unused 2 x 4 (which is just a piece of wood) abandoned in your attic or garage makes a great wooden jamb. Just place it under the doorknob to prevent someone from kicking open a door.
A wooden dowel or that good old 2 x 4 also are perfect for securing your sliding door. Stick it into the track to stop it from opening. This works for windows too!
The Bottom Line:
A tight budget doesn’t mean that you can’t secure your home. Common sense and simple tricks will keep your home safe without hurting your wallet.
Photo By: Peter Madsen