Home Security Guide – Why have Home Security?
We have created this home security guide as it can be scary and unsettling to become a victim of a burglary. Therefore having a good home security system is something that should be taken seriously.
Our home is often perceived as a safe heaven and someone gaining unwanted entry to our property is intrusive. In other words, it often feels as a serious crime.
To prevent yourself and your family to fall victim to unwanted entry to your home, we advise you to install proper security measures.
In this article, we aim to give you an overview of security measures you can implement. For instance, we’ll have a look at CCTV camera’s, home security alarms and home security lighting.
These range from free solutions to expensive security measures and everything in between!
Statistics on Burglaries
According to the latest figures from the office for national statistics:
- Due to local lockdowns, the number of burglaries has gone down significantly.
- In 2020 there were over 258,594 recorded domestic burglaries across the country.
- Howver, 70% of offenders gain access to the property through a door, while 30% gain access through a window.
- The most stolen items are purses, wallets and money; as well as jewellery, watches, computer equipment and other electronic goods (i.e. cameras)
- Just under half the burglaries are opportunistic
falls were likely to be driven by national lockdown restrictions, with non-essential shops and the night-time economy being closed and people spending more time in their homes.
Home Security Guide – Burglary Prevention
You might want to ask the following questions when assessing the access points of your home:
- What kind of locks do you have on your doors and windows?
- Are they visible from the outside?
- Are the locks secure?
- When windows are open, do they have a security lock so they can’t be opened all the way?
- Do you have double glazing installed on accessible windows?
- Is your garage doorlock secure?
- What type of lock has been installed on the door which gives access to the home from the garage?
ENTRY POINTS TO YOUR HOME
You first want to establish the entry points of your property.
These include the front and back door, as well as any garage doors and conservatory doors.
You need to inspect all ground floor windows and any window frames on higher levels, which are large enough for a person to fit through.
Securing your Doors and Windows
As 70% of intruders walk through one of the doors in your property, you will need to ensure these are secured properly.
Additional Door Security features include:
Additional Window Security features include:
- Locks secured to the frame of the window
- British Standard 950 or PAS 24 Locks
- Laminated glass or plastic glazing film
Opportunistic Burglars and Planned Burglaries
There are two types of burglaries; those that are carried out by an opportunistic burglar and those that are planned burglaries.
Statistics show that there are as many burglaries during the day as there are at night, and your security should be optimised for this.
Opportunistic burglars tend to ‘feel’ for open doors/windows and take chances. Planned burglaries require surveilance of your property and your movements. Often from somewhere out of sight.
In order to avoid either, you might want to consider these safety measures:
- Always make sure it looks like ‘somebody’ is home.
- Make sure the entry points to your home are as visible as possible. This might mean getting rid of walls and/or hedges.
Make your security visible from outside your property.
Burglar alarms – for home safety
You want to maximise the protection of your property and control over your security.
There are many different burglar alarms to choose from. They range in price and give different levels of security
You might want to consider:
Are there many burglaries in your area?
Is there an active neighbourhood watch in your area?
Do you live in an urban or rural location?
Are there any high value items in your home?
Types of burglar alarm include;
- Dummy alarm
- Bells only
- Monitored via an app
- Monitored by a company
The cheapest home security option would be to install a dummy burglar alarm.
This would look like an active alarm and might keep opportunistic burglars at bay; though will not give you any protection should an intruder go for it regardless.
Home Security Guide – Burglary Prevention
A bells only alarm
This home security product would give you some protection, especially if you have an active neighbourhood watch or neighbours who are home often and are willing to check your property for you, should the alarm go off.
It might frighten the burglar away and keep your belongings safe (ish).
You will not be notified by the alarm system, nor will the police
A monitored alarm system via an app
This will inform you when the alarm goes off, so you can notify the police. Some alarms will just notify you, while others give you the option to check out your property via cameras from your phone or computer.
These alarm systems can be wired as well as wireless. The wired options tend to be cheaper, though more expensive to install. The wireless options are expensive, but can often be installed by yourself.
There are many monitored alarm systems out there and we have an in depth article about these
A burglar alarm monitored by a company.
Lastly you can have your burglar alarm monitored by a company. You would pay a monthly or yearly amount and should the alarm go off, you and/or the police will be notified. This is a great option if you are away a lot or work further away from home.
Whatever burglar alarm you choose for your home, make sure it is VISIBLE from outside your home to make any potential intruder aware that you have an alarm installed!
Home Security Guide – Burglary Prevention
CCTV – for home security
CCTV installations that are VISIBLE are proven to deter most burglars.
But remember, it can also attract attention of professional burglars, that may consider it worth breaking into as high value items or even ‘stashes’ of cash are kept at your property.
Therefore it seems wise to have this option, only if it is installed well and covers your home properly.
You can go for a wired CCTV system or a wireless CCTV system. Both are available for indoor as well as outdoor use. The range of CCTV systems range from simple cameras to night vision cameras.
The price of CCTV systems have come down in recent years, making it more affordable and accessible for a wider market.
Home Security – Wired CCTV
Wired CCTV systems tend to be cheaper to buy than the wireless systems, though it will likely be more expensive to install. The wires will connect the camera to the recorder. You will have less flexabilty to move the system as well as viewing the footage.
Home Security – Wireless CCTV
There are lots of great systems on the market and while you are likely to fork out for the system, it gives you lots of flexablity. You can install it yourself, move it if needed and view and record footage via your phone or computer often with an easy app.
We have great reviews and advice on different CCTV systems. As we all have different security issues and needs, it helps to learn about what is out there and what will protect you and your property best.
Home Security Lights
There are many different security lights on the market, but they broadly fall into two categories:
- Sensor lights
- Manual lights
Manual lights are turned on by yourself, usually when it gets dark. They will stay on until you turn them off again.
Upside is that these lights tend to be cheap to buy.
Downside is that they will not be on when you are not in, so your home is not lit up when you are out, giving opportunistic burglars a chance to break into your home.
The sensor lights tend to be a bit more expensive, but are a good deterrend as any potential intruder might be lid up in their attempt and put off out of fear of being seen.
There are super bright sensor lights on the market and not every neighbour is in favour of your sensor light, especially if the cat sets it off every 10 minutes, and the light shines brightly into their home!
However, with careful consideration of the location and direction of your sensor lights, these are in our option the better option.
There are many ways of securing your property and in our opinion you are best using a combination of the above
Good locks, combined with visibility, lighting and a security system gives you the biggest chance to stay safe and have a good night’s rest!
Don’t forget to secure your shed and garage. Read our article here.
You might also be interested in:
Burglar alarm review
Great DIY home security systems
Best home security system on the market 2022