10 Tips to Protect Your Home in Jacksonville, FL
According to the FBI, home break-ins and home burglaries are the biggest threat to your home security. It's estimated that in the United States, a home invasion happens every 14 seconds.
How safe is your home? Is your residence an easy target? We've put together a few tips to help protect your home and your loved ones.
1. Make sure your home is well lit
A well-lit home is a deterrent for thieves. Install outdoor floodlights or motion detection flood lights in your front and backyard, and any other area that may be dark near an entry point that is enticing to thieves.
Going on vacation? Set up a timer for the interior lights in your home to turn on and off at a scheduled time. You can have those lights come on at a time when you would normally be home from work and have them go off in the evening when you would normally be in bed.
You can also have a TV or radio turn on when you're away with a 24-hour timer which will provide the sounds of someone being home and may further deter a would-be burglar from breaking into your home.
2. Install a home security system
It's estimated that a home that doesn't have a video security system installed is 300% more likely to get broken into. Install a high-quality video surveillance system that you can monitor remotely from the internet or your smartphoneÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½when you're home and when you're away for true peace-of-mind security.
3. Close and lock the garage door
Thieves love easy access, and one of the favored points of entry is through an open garage door. Keep your garage doors locked, even when you are home, because many homeowners have been robbed while they are still home by a thief who entered through an open garage door.
Also, thieves can open your garage door with an automatic garage door opener, so if you keep one in your car, make sure the car door is locked and the door opener is out of sight.
4. Keep windows closed and locked
Home break-ins also happen when thieves enter through an open or unlocked window. Keep your windows locked, even when you are home, and that includes your patio sliding glass door.
If you like to open your windows when you are at home, you can install security latches on a window that prevents the window from opening up far and wide enough for a thief to enter through the open window. You can also put a wooden or metal rod in the track of your patio sliding door, which prevents the door from sliding open for added security.
5. Keep landscaping trimmed
Home burglars love overgrown trees, bushes and other types of landscaping that obscure the view of an entry point, such as front door, window, back door or patio. Keep landscaping under windows and in front of doors trimmed to deter home break-ins.
6. Get to know your neighbors
Introduce yourself, and get to know your neighbors near your home. Neighbors can keep an eye out for anything suspicious and can alert you if anything is going on at your home or another neighbor's home. Talk to each other and agree to always be on the lookout for each other.
7. Change the door locks
Always change the locks when you move into a new home. You never know who may have a key and have access to your home when you move in.
8. Install heavy-duty deadbolt locks
Installing a deadbolt lock on the front and back doors of your home can provide additional security, because they are better able to withstand an attempted break-in than a traditional spring bolted lock. Deadbolt locks can only be opened by physically turning the bolt in the lock.
A deadbolt lock can be locked with a key from the outside, and from the inside by turning a bolt. For added security, you'll want to install a heavy-duty deadbolt that is pick-resistant. And, remember to always lock your door, even if you are just running out to get the mailÃ¢ï¿½ï¿½it only takes seconds for a thief to enter through an unlocked door.
9. Place alarm stickers and signs in clear view
Placing video surveillance signs and stickers around your home can be a strong deterrent for thieves. Thieves look for an easy target, and a home under surveillance suggests otherwise. And, whether you have a dog or not, you can place a "Beware of Dog" sign on the outside of your home for added security. A thief will most likely avoid a home with a dog.
10. Keep valuables out of sight
Have a big screen TV in your living room? Keep it out of sight by closing the blinds or curtains. All big-ticket items that are enticing to thieves should be hidden from view. Also avoid common hiding places for valuables such as under a mattress. The master bedroom is the first place thieves look to find your valuables, and the kitchen tends to be the last place a thief looks.
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