Moving to a new home is a lot more complicated than how it seems. Apart from having to pack and unpack your belongings, there’s also the issue of security. Since your home is one of your biggest investments, you have to take the time to make sure the property is safe enough before the family moves in.
To help you get started, here are 8 tips you can use in securing your new home.
1. Check your locks
Before actually moving in, do a full inspection of the house, particularly all doors and windows. This is important if the house isn’t newly constructed or there’s a prior owner. Make sure that there are no broken or weak locks. Change any existing locks since you’ll never know how many people actually have duplicates to the older keys.
If the property still uses traditional locks, consider upgrading them to smart locks. If you are on a tight budget, deadbolt locks make a great alternative.
2. Get a security system
If your new home doesn’t have an existing security system yet, do your research and find a reputable home security system. Consider your needs as well as your budget in picking the best one.
If you know that you’ll be moving frequently, get a DIY system. It’s a lot easier to install than most systems and you can take it with you when you move. It doesn’t require a technician’s help, too.
If you would like to get something nontransferable, make sure you know exactly what you are getting into. Read the fine prints and don’t sign any agreement unless you are sure about the terms. Check how long the contracts will last and what you can do in case you decide to terminate it.
3. Do proper landscaping
Trimming bushes and overgrown trees isn’t only effective in boosting your home’s curb appeal. It’s actually an effective way to deter burglars.
When your lawn has enough lighting and there’s no untrimmed shrubbery that can block its view, burglars are less likely to attack your home. Since they fear getting caught and identified, they would rather move on to their next target than to compromise their own safety.
4. Know your neighbors
You don’t necessarily have to throw a big party just to acquaint yourself with your neighbors. You can just drop by their place and introduce yourself literally.
During an emergency, your neighbors are the first people who can respond to your needs. They can check out your home while you are away and they can also call the local authorities on your behalf.
5. Do a mock burglary
If you aren’t sure about how protected your home is, do a mock burglary. Stand outside of your home at night and imagine yourself as a burglar. Think of the easiest and best way you can get inside your property and use it to test your home’s security.
While inside your home, determine how easy it is to access your valuables and how easy it is to navigate around. You should also test how you can disarm your alarm system without getting noticed.
As you go around your house, list down the weak points as you encounter them. This will give you a clear idea of what you need to work on the next morning.
6. Know the people who can help you
Since you are just new to the community, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the area. Ask your neighbors about the nearest hospital, fire station or police department. You should also ask for their phone numbers so you’d know who to call in case of emergency.
7. Start an emergency plan
Apart from knowing your resources, you also need to have a plan in place. An emergency plan can lessen the chances of you feeling panicked and unfocused during an emergency.
In creating your family emergency plan, make sure to include all family members. Set a specific place or person the family can reach out to during an emergency. This is particularly important if you have kids or elderly at home. They should be able to have an idea on what they should do in case a bad incident happens and you’re away.
8. Practice safe habits
No matter how expensive your locks and alarms are, if you aren’t going to use them, they won’t be effective in protecting your home.
Apart from keeping your doors and windows locked at all times, you should also be cautious of the people who want to enter your property. Since burglars can easily disguise themselves, never let anyone you don’t know enter your home.
Another thing you can do is to change up your routine. Burglars like observing their target properties first to know when a house is going to be vacant. Leave and go home at varying schedule so burglars will have a hard time predicting your schedule.
Rose Cabrera is a freelance writer specializing in home security solutions. She is highly passionate in sharing security tips and tricks anyone can use.