How to Make Sure Your Home is Secure

The safest home is not one that a burglar would have trouble breaking into, but is entirely off a burglar’s radar. In a typical home break-in, a burglar carefully walks around and “cases” your home, looking for weaknesses in your security or discreet places to avoid potential witnesses. Therefore, you want to make your home impervious to casing.

 

  1. Get an Outdoor Security Camera
    There are plenty of options nowadays for an outdoor security camera. Nearly all of them are easy to set up, can run off battery or solar power, and they’re Wi-Fi enabled so you can surveil your home from your phone when you’re out. The other benefit is that it’s intimidating to have a camera peering down over your property.

 

  1. Find an Alternative to Hiding Spare Keys
    A hand holds up a set of keys in front of a house's front door.

    Those inconspicuous hiding places aren’t all that inconspicuous.

    This is how we used to do it: hide a key under an inconspicuous rock, under a mat, or somewhere in your backyard. This isn’t a safe idea, as burglars know what to look for and those spaces may be more obvious than you think. If you need to keep a spare key somewhere, consider leaving one to a trusted neighbour or friend living close by. If you have to leave a key on your property, keep it locked in a hidden lockbox. Just remember that whoever you give it to, make sure you leave your keys unlabeled.

 

  1. Use Grilles on Your Windows
    Bars on your windows can turn away burglars, but they also really hurt your home’s curb and neighbourhood appeal. Grilles, on the other hand, are metal covers in different designs that are more aesthetically pleasing and are difficult to punch or cut through. It’s a happy medium between looks and security, and you can customize them to match the aesthetic of your home.

 

  1. Do a Security Walk Around Your Home
    Have you ever looked at your house from a burglar’s perspective? Walk around your property and take note of any of the following:• Bushes close to your windows and doors
    • Areas that don’t get a lot of light
    • Electronics and valuables you can spot through your windowsA majority of break-ins happen during the day when you’re working, and a third of break-ins happen through your home’s front door. Consider installing a deadbolt on your front and back doors, trim your hedges so no one can hide behind them, and consider investing in some exterior lights to illuminate the darkest sides of your home.

 

A house's front door with a deep crack where someone tried to kick it in.

This is an example of a Polar door with a reinforced door frame that resisted a break-in.

 

  1. Buy a Garage Door Timer
    If you own a garage, it’s almost guaranteed someone living there has left the door open all day. Garages are large and a very sneaky way for someone to get into your home. A garage door timer is an inexpensive product that removes the guesswork about whether you closed your door or not. And, as always, if someone does get into your garage, keep a deadbolt on your interior door and don’t leave a spare key in your garage!

 

  1. Keep Your Valuables in a Safe
    If you set a timer for 8 minutes, how many of your valuables do you think you could grab before the timer goes off? The typical home break-in lasts about 8 minutes, and a lot of people keep their valuables in plain site.If you want to go a step beyond storing your jewellery in a dresser drawer, you could get a small safe. Not only is this a great burglar deterrent, most safes are fireproof, keeping everything intact should the unthinkable happen.Here’s a final tip: keep a written inventory of all your valuables, and their worth, in your safe. Should you ever become a victim of a break-in, you can more confidently account for anything that’s missing.