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Crime Prevention Tips

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Most of these crime prevention tips are specifically related to home security but since it is an extensive list of tips, there are also some basic generic tips about keeping yourself and those around you safe from the 'bad guys'. Let's face it, we live in a world that can sometimes be chaotic. It is in our best interest to take a defensive stance when it comes to personal protection as well as protecting our homes and our loved ones from becoming a statistic. Due diligence is required. One of the best first steps that you can take is to enlist the help of one of the home security monitoring services that are available.

Get to Know the Neighbors
Be aware of what is happening in your neighborhood. Try to get to know your neighbors. You might want exchange phone numbers with them in case of emergency. Once you get to know your neighbors, you might be comfortable with exchanging other information with them such as some of the details about your daily routines. This will make it easier to spot discrepancies.

Put Some Trust in your Instincts
If you feel uncomfortable in any situation, leave as soon as you can. Your instincts will tell you when something is not quite right. Occasionally your instincts may be wrong but as the old saying goes, "It's better to be safe than sorry." Use your instincts around the house as well as when you are out in public. If you see something suspicious then report it to the proper authorities.

Use Blocking Devices
Use a secondary blocking device on all ground floor windows and sliding glass doors. Don't give a possible intruder more than 6 inches of wiggle room. Of course, they could always just break the window or sliding glass door. Nothing can prevent that (other than having bullet proof glass installed in your house). It would be much cheaper to just have a home security system installed. There are actually broken glass detectors that can be installed.

Avoid Certain Conveniences
Although it may seem like a convenient thing to do, it is not a good idea to hide your house keys in under your doormats, rocks or planters. Burglars can spend up to a month surveying a possible target. If they are watching, they will see where you hide your key.

Secure Your Doors
Securing your doors will give you some peace of mind and it will also help to deter intruders. Use four three-inch screws in order to secure heavy duty lock strike plates in your door frames. Doors that have glass windows or glass ornamentation should have double key deadbolt locks. This is done so that a burglar cannot break the glass and reach inside to unlock the door. Don't forget to secure your garage door as well!

Don't be an Easy Target
Try to avoid making yourself an easy target for the bad guys. It's just like the school yard. If a criminal spots someone or something that they perceive to be weak, they will exploit the opportunity. Remember that bad guys are not the hero type. They exploit weaknesses and use any advantage that they can find. If you look like the type of person who is always looking out for bad guys, they will probably sense this and move on to the next target.

Fool the Bad Guys
Try to make it look like someone is always home. You can use interior light timers in order to establish a pattern of occupancy. Keep the bad guys on their toes and guessing as to when your home is actually empty. Burglars like to strike when homes are unoccupied.

Defend Yourself
Take a class in self defense. Learn how to use pepper spray properly. When used by surprise, pepper spray is an excellent distraction that can give you the time that you need in order to get away from an assailant. That being said, if you are confronted by someone who is brandishing a weapon, you should follow their demands so that you don't put yourself in more danger.

Lock your Doors
Make it a point to lock your doors whenever you leave your home. Even if you are just going to the store, you should make it a habit to always lock up. Even if you feel that you live in a safe neighborhood, lock your doors and windows whenever you leave. Period.

Use Floodlights
Go ahead and light up the outside of your home. Burglars and other criminals are like mushrooms when it comes to nighttime prowling. Light is their enemy. Your exterior lighting should allow for at least 75 feet of visibility in all directions. Use good lighting along the pathway and at your door.

Inspect your Vulnerabilities
In this exercise you get to be the home security inspector. You can start with a home "security" check. Begin at your front door and work your way clockwise around the entire perimeter of your home. Then you can move indoors and follow the same pattern. Look for all of the little details that you may have missed upon first inspection. Look for any loopholes that could allow an intruder to easily enter your home. Then you can make a checklist and fix these problem areas one by one.

Don't Let Them Know You're Gone
It's best to not leave any signs that you have gone on vacation. If you will be gone for more than a few days, arrange to have the mail and papers stopped or picked up. If a burglar sees a bunch of newspaper on the lawn then they can probably guess that the house is empty.

Home Security System Alternatives
If for some reason you cannot or do not want to install a home security system, do take some precautionary steps anyway. Make sure that you are not an easy target. Do look for the obvious vulnerabilities of your home and do put in reinforcements wherever possible. Also, it doesn't cost any money to get to know your neighbors. You can look out for each other.

Use a Deadbolt
A deadbolt lock, when used properly, can provide you home with good protection. When you turn the key, the lock mechanism slides a strong metal bolt from the door into the frame. In most cases, a burglar would now need to find another route in order to gain entrance to your home.

Keep up your Guard!
When you look at the statistics, you might think to yourself that the odds of someone breaking into your home are slim. Donít think that it canít happen to you. Don't make the mistake of letting your guard down simply because you live out in the country or because you live in an area that typically sees little crime. Crime can happen anywhere, and it does.

Automate your Security
Keeping up your guard on a daily basis can be made easier when you can automate some of the home security functions. You might want to use light timers or photocells to turn on/off lights automatically. When used in conjunction with a home security monitoring system, this can be a pretty good setup. Tip! Even when you think that you have thought of everything, think again.

Beware of Dog
A barking dog can be one of the best deterrents in preventing burglaries. If you were a burglar, what would you do if you heard a large dog barking? Most would just turn and flee and find another home to target. Some burglars can get around the dog problem buy offering them snacks or by causing them harm. This is one reason why it is a good idea to not rely on a dog for complete security.

Your Family Security Plan in Action
Does your family have a plan in place in case of emergencies? One way to keep your family reasonable safe is to have a family security plan. The first thing that you will want to do is organize a plan of action and write it down on paper. Then you can present it to your family when you have a family security meeting. Go over the plan on a regular basis so that everyone in the home knows exactly what to do in case of an emergency. Your plan should cover several different scenarios so that you will be prepared for the types of events that are most likely to occur.

Get a Home Security System
The very best way to secure your house and the people who live there is to get a home security system. You can install one yourself but the best way to be secure is to hire a monitoring company to install a security system that will be remotely monitored. First, you need to get estimates from three security alarm companies. Then you can select the company that you feel the most comfortable with. However, do keep in mind that you should not depend entirely upon an alarm system to protect you and your family. You should still take the extra steps and go a little 'overboard' in your efforts to secure your home. Install locks, do a home security survey, talk to neighbors, etc.

Change your Locks
You should make it a point to be a little pessimistic when it comes to home security. Don't assume that the world is full of honest people. If you lose the keys to your home or move into a new home, change the locks immediately. Then you won't always be wondering who has a key to your home.

Solid Doors and Quality Locks
Solid doors and locks are your first line of defense. Many residential doors typically feature hollow-core construction and low quality locks. This is especially true with new construction. The builders are always trying to cut costs in order to turn a profit. What you really need is solid core doors and with quality locks. A solid core door, strong locks with reinforced strike plates, and reinforced window devices will stop most forced entries. But don't stop there! There are many other steps that you need to take in order to completely secure your home.

Be Aware of your Surroundings
Who is standing next to you? Do you know who is behind you? To protect your family, the best defense is awareness. When you are out in public you should be constantly scanning your surroundings for possible threats. Pretend like you are one of the presidents security guards. When defending your home, you should employee similar vigilance. Is there a car that you don't recognize patrolling your neighborhood? Keep your eyes peeled and your mind open at all times.

Provide a Second Layer of Protection
Assume that the bad guys can somehow manage to penetrate your fortress and enter your dwelling. Now is when they should run up against your second line of defense. Get a diversion safe. Hiding valuables in these types of safes is a good way to keep your valuables out of sight. Have a family emergency plan. Consider having a panic room (see below) in your house. Learn how to use pepper spray. Use video surveillance so that you can at least identify the bad guys if they get away with some loot. Consider getting a dog.

Panic Rooms - Safe Room
You might want to prepare a room within the interior of your home where your family can safely retreat if there is a home invasion or other type of threat. Make sure that your panic room has a phone. You might want to keep other types of communications devices in there as well. Cell phones, computers, ham radio, these are communication devices that you can use as a backup. Keep about 3 days worth of water and nonperishable food in your safe room. Depending on your comfort level and your expertise, you might also want to keep a weapon in there.

The Impenetrable Fortress
Take pride in the fortress that you call home. The first step in creating a fortress is to make your home more difficult to enter. Remember, the burglar will simply bypass your home if it requires too much effort or requires more skill and tools than they possess. If you have groundfloor windows or sliding glass doors then there is no way that you can make your home impenetrable. This is a fact that you will have to live with. Get a good security system and a dog. Knowing that your home is securely monitored and that you have a guard dog as a backup will help you sleep at night.

Front Door Safety
Many intruders simply knock on the front door and then enter when the homeowner opens the door. It may seem obvious but it is a good idea to install a peephole or viewer in all entry doors so that you can at least see who is outside without having to actually open your door. Door chains cannot be trusted. They can be easily broken. Of course, donít open the door to anyone you donít know.

Think like a criminal
If you can't beat them, join them. Or, in this case, if you don't want to join them, beat them. Not literally of course (although that may be needed in certain scenarios). Join the bad guys in mind and spirit only. Put yourself in their shoes. Try thinking like a bad guy. If you were a burglar, how would you go about entering your home? Where is the weakest link?

Try casing your home just like a criminal would. Sit in your car at the curb or the end of the driveway and imagine that you are going to try to break into your house. Try doing this at different times of the day. There might be certain times of day that seem more vulnerable.

Write down your thoughts and plans. When you are done, go over the plans and turn them into the steps that would need to be taken in order to get into the house and commit a robbery. Now, reverse roles again and become the homeowner. Go through each of the steps and figure out the best way to stop the bag guys at each of these steps. This is a good way to expose your vulnerabilities and to get them fixed from the inside out.


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Home Security Subjects

Choosing an Alarm Company

D.I.Y. Do it Yourself Security System Questions and Answers

Monitoring Company Vs. DIY Home Security System Installation

Alarm System Definitions

Crime Prevention Tips

Various Burglary Statistics

About 'Free' Security Systems

Do I Need a Security System?

Home Security Common Sense

How Home Security Systems Affect your Homeowners Insurance

Information for Renters

Neighborhood Watch Systems

Fire Protection for your Home

More Security Info...

 

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