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5 tips to improve the security of your home

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Protecting your family and your property are often the top concerns when you own a home.

The good news is that there are some simple steps you can take to help improve the security of your home and reduce the risk of theft. Here are some easy tips that can help imprvoe your safety and overall peace of mind:

  1. DECORATE GARDENS FOR SAFETY

Garden decoration can help beautify your home, but it can also help protect you from intruders. For example, according to  Angie’s List *, planting thorn bushes under windows can discourage a burglary attempt. Shrubs near windows and doors should be kept pruned, as overgrown plants can offer a hiding place for thieves, according to Angie’s List. Additionally, the installation of decorative lighting, including motion activated lights on your property can serve as a deterrent.

  1. STOP PACKAGE THIEVES

Shopping online has its benefits, but door deliveries can be a temptation for thieves. Consumer Reports * suggests working with courier companies on security, requesting a text message when a delivery is made, requiring a signature, or simply asking that packages be left in a less prominent location. Another option, according to Consumer Reports, is to install security cameras around your home to monitor activity.

  1. KEEP VALUABLES HIDDEN

If a bystander can see inside your home and take an instant inventory of your valuables, then a criminal can, too, warns the  Insurance Information Institute  (III) *. The organization suggests rearranging your furniture so that it is less visible from the door or window. This also applies to car keys, which in many homes are often left on a shelf or hung on a hook near a driveway. Consumer Reports recommends  storing * these inside a cabinet or drawer to keep them out of sight.

  1. STRENGTHEN ENTRY POINTS

The III suggests having exterior doors that are metal or solid wood, and that are at least 1 3/4 inch thick. Windows can be protected with locks or burglar-resistant glass. If your home has sliding glass windows or doors, reinforce them with a metal bar, says III. A security alarm is also useful, of course. The III recommends an alarm that alerts an outside service when the system is violated.

  1. ADOPT SAFE BEHAVIORS

Your personal habits can also play a role in home security. The III encourages homeowners to get used to properly closing doors and windows and activating the alarm system when leaving their home. If you’re gone for a while, the III suggests that your home have the appearance of being inhabited: leave the blinds in their usual positions, make a plan to defer mail and other deliveries, and use light timers in various areas of the home ( the  devices smart home * can help with this task). Another tip from III: remove your house keys when you leave the keys with a parking attendant. The reason for doing this is that tech-savvy thieves can  duplicate your house key* simply by taking a photo of her.

Common sense practices like these can help prevent your home from being an easy target and can go a long way toward keeping your family, home, and belongings out of harm’s way.

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