Maintaining the safety of your home doesn’t need to require expensive products or extensive renovations; making a few quick adjustments can make your space far safer for both you and your family.
Slip-resistant mats and grab bars may seem like old-person features, but they help protect against accidental falls in the tub and shower and have also proven useful against potential burglars. Furthermore, lighting up your yard properly may deter criminals looking for opportunities.
1. Install a security system
At home or renting, a security system is an invaluable way to safeguard your property. Yet finding the ideal system can be overwhelming at first.
Home security systems generally feature door and window sensors connected to a central control panel that, when activated, notify it via wireless signals to sound an alarm or, in more advanced systems, notify local authorities.
To ensure a system works seamlessly with your smart devices and other technology in your home, it is key to select one which complements them all. A DIY home security system with purchased equipment may be better for renters; that way you can take it with them when moving.
2. Keep your mail out of sight
Your home likely already includes smoke detectors and an emergency escape plan, but may not include other quick-fix home safety measures you need. Unattended piles of mail, untidy floors, loose rugs/wires/staircase lighting may all pose threats that lead to falls resulting in serious injuries for all members of the household.
Develop the habit of opening mail as soon as it arrives and sorting it as soon as you open it, throwing away junk mail or catalogs with personal details, and filing away bills or important documents as needed. Consider signing off mailing lists to reduce unwanted paper coming into your home, while when going away on vacation have someone from your community collect your mail to avoid signaling trespassers that it is vacant and collect it yourself upon your return home. In addition, keep your yard trimmed so it does not alert thieves that no one’s home!
3. Store your valuables in a safe
At some point in their lives, most people own valuable items they wish they didn’t risk losing – from jewelry and cash to sentimental memorabilia and family heirlooms. If this applies to you, consider placing these belongings in a safe at home or another secure facility to prevent their disappearance.
Burglars can be unpredictable, searching in obvious spots where homeowners hide their valuables. But you can avoid burglars by placing items in less obvious spots.
Picture frames, mirrors, and other wall hangings can be used to conceal items. You could for instance store money behind an envelope behind a photo or in a fake book on your bookshelf; alternatively, you could use an in-wall storage unit or even a false ceiling to secure your valuables; though the most secure way is probably storing them with your bank as part of its safe deposit box system.
4. Install a security camera
Security cameras can help keep criminals at bay from breaking into homes, as well as provide invaluable evidence in case of an invasion. Professional installers are available to install one camera or an entire system and there are plenty of resources to assist residents.
Residents should first identify any existing systems they own and determine which brands work with those systems, before researching various cameras’ features in order to find ones that suit their individual needs.
Depending on their camera brand, users must choose either wired or wireless options for installation. Wired cameras generally require hardwiring power and internet, yet are more secure. Wireless options tend to be easier to install while being susceptible to hackers; additionally, these need to be within range of a router, Wi-Fi extender, or hub.
5. Keep your Wi-Fi network secure
Maintaining the security of your home network is paramount to protecting its devices from hackers. Begin by encrypting your Wi-Fi network – most routers come equipped with this option, so no extra software or browser extensions need to be downloaded and installed!
Make sure that your firewall is up and running – this will stop less secure devices on your network from communicating with more secure ones, which could allow thieves to steal data or install ransomware.
Change the default network name (SSID). Doing so can give hackers valuable insight into your home network’s brand and model number, which could give them access to sensitive information about it. As an additional layer of protection, try disabling file sharing on your home network.
6. Install a fence around your pool
Pool fencing is an essential safety measure that will deter children and others from accessing your backyard swimming area without supervision. From wood to glass fences, the right fence for you depends on your budget, needs, budget, local laws and regulations, as well as consulting a professional before beginning installation. Measuring carefully is recommended during planning phase to help determine which fence type will meet all requirements while meeting code regulations; be sure to save an accurate schematic during this phase for later reference!
7. Keep your valuables out of sight
Burglaries are crimes of opportunity, with burglars often looking for items they can quickly steal from obvious places. By hiding your valuables in plain sight, burglars may be less likely to see them.
Some household objects can provide an effective place for hiding small valuables, like the hollow bottom of a drawer or food boxes; burglars will typically ignore these storage options.
For larger items, store them in a safe. This can be particularly helpful in protecting expensive jewellery and cash deposits. Furthermore, you can password-protect and GPS activate electronic devices, making them harder for thieves or sellers to sell or retrieve; and secure firearms using certified gun safes to protect the family and ensure their safety. Lastly, speak to your insurance provider about an individual home safe policy which covers these assets.