Seven Home Winter Security Tips
During winter there are less daylight hours and we’re so often leaving the house in the dark or returning to it in darkness. The downside of the increased hours of darkness is the increase in burglaries or attempted burglaries during the winter months.
In addition, during October, November and December our houses are known to be stocked with gifts ready for the festive season and this is also a temptation for burglars, who so often can find us vulnerable during the season; particularly if we have house guests who don’t maintain our stricter levels of security within the house.
What should we be thinking and doing this winter to help keep our homes secure? Here are seven tips to increase home security.
Communication – Ensure that everyone in your home knows how secure you wish to make it. Even if you have guests during Christmas, a quick briefing is worthwhile. Remind them to lock doors, keep windows shut when they’re not in the rooms, keep lights on in certain rooms even when leaving the house and if they are not always coming and going with you, you may need to make them aware of your alarms or security systems to ensure they’re activated correctly.
Lighting – If you’re leaving and returning to your house during darker hours of the day, it’s worth putting lights on a timer. When you leave lighting to come on whilst you are out of the house, ensure it’s in main rooms such as your kitchen or living room not to just the hallway for example, this will give the appearance that someone is in and deter a burglar.
Lock Up – Make sure that all doors are locked at all times, even when you’re at home. If you can also lock all windows during winter, this will add to the security of your home. If you have UPVC doors, ensure that these are double locked. Fit restrictors to windows wherever possible, to allow them to open a little, thieves can fit through any gap, so only allow windows to open a little, less than the size a human head could fit through. Also, ensure that you don’t forget about your garage or shed locks, these should remain locked at all times.
Alarms – Alarm systems or evidence of an alarm on a property are a deterrent to burglars, they’re more likely to bypass your home if this is one of the measures you take.
Gates & Fences – With the build-up of winds during the winter, it’s worth keeping a check on your fence to ensure it is secure with no gaps or breaks that someone could easily use to gain faster or closer access to your home. If you have a side passage, it’s worth installing a high gate to prevent people from accessing this.
Evidence of Presents – Christmas can often involve lavish, expensive gifts such as televisions, phones, Blu-Ray players, stereos etc. It’s important not to leave evidence of these out ready for the rubbish collection as you’ll essentially be giving a burglar a shopping list of the new items available in the house. Shred boxes and break them down as much as possible to hide what they carried, or try to dispose of them over time or take them to your local tip.
Keys – Whether you have guests arriving whilst you’re out or allowing friends to access your property whilst you’re not there, don’t leave keys under mats or flower pots outside your property. It’s better to arrange for guests to come to you to collect a set of keys. Burglars are aware of the keys under the mat and will seek to find these. Also, if a burglar does gain access to your property, they will focus on finding wallets and bags to get hold of keys. Therefore, leave keys out of site, not in hallways or at the bottom of the stairs.
For further tips and security assistance speak to Sentinel Security Systems Ltd in Birmingham. They specialise in the installation, maintenance and service of intruder alarms, access control, fire alarms and CCTV systems.