Keeping your home and possessions safe is undoubtedly high on your list of priorities. While a home security system is the ultimate safety feature, not everyone can afford a pricey home alarm. If you want to keep your home as safe as possible within your budget, you have several options. Here are five cheap ways to keep your home and possessions secure:
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Trim Your Bushes
If you have shrubs, flowers and trees butting up against your house, make sure that you keep them manicured. If you have any landscaping that is blocking your view to the outdoors, cut it back significantly or remove it altogether. While a beautifully landscaped yard can be a joy to look at, it can give thieves several places to hide. In addition to cutting back your shrubs, remove any lawn furniture that is sitting directly under your windows; this furniture can be used by thieves to give them the boost they need to get inside your home.
Both the exterior and the interior of your home should be well-lit in order to thwart potential thieves. Pay special attention to stairwells, corners, decks and dense landscaping when planning your lighting scheme. In order to better layout your lighting, look at your home from the outside at dusk and make note of any large shadows. These are the areas that will be the most vulnerable and the first areas that you should concentrate on.
Practice Fire Safety
We all know that smoke detectors can save our lives but it’s important that they are installed properly for maximum effectiveness. To make sure that your home, family and possessions are adequately protected, there should be a smoke alarm on each level of your home.
Additionally, these smoke alarms should be placed strategically to provide the safety that you are looking for. You should have an alarm in the kitchen, one in the main living area and one centrally located in the hallway outside of your family members’ bedrooms.
Don’t Fix Your Appliances
No matter how tempted you are to fix your own appliances when they break-down, it’s never a good idea unless you are a trained electrician, plumber or repair person. Mis-diagnosing and repairing your appliances incorrectly can present a very real danger to your family. Thousands of fires that could have been avoided are started by faulty appliances each year. If your appliances break-down, always hire a professional to do the repair work.
Keep Your Information Private
It’s the rare burglar who is brazen enough to break into your home while you are in residence; do your best to keep your comings and goings private. Teach your children to never give your schedule out to anyone outside of the family, and don’t post your schedule on social media sites. If you’ll be gone for an extended period of time, consider hiring a house-sitter, leave at least one vehicle in the driveway, and install timers on your interior and exterior lights. The illusion of someone being at home is often enough to send thieves to the next house on the block.
You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to keep your home, family and possessions safe. By trimming your bushes, installing smoke alarms and keeping your information private, you can significantly reduce your risk of a home invasion. If you need more safety tips, contact your local police department; many departments across the country will perform a free safety audit of your home.