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Anyone can become a target to a burglary or a home invasion. The primary focus of the burglar is to get your valuables. Therefore, homes that come across as rich might be their first target. However, despite your wealth status, if you come across as an easy target, chances are good that intruders will pick you to be their victim.

People that live alone are often targeted because their homes will be easier to monitor and they may seem to be less of a physical threat, especially the elderly and women living alone. Here are some security tips if you are living alone in a home or apartment that might get those thieves looking in a different direction.

1. Do Inspection First

Look around your street, neighbourhood and at your home and notice what might attract the criminal. Can you see your flat screen TV through the window and is there plenty of hiding places around your neighbourhood? Is the light around your home a little dull or do your doors and windows seem weak and like an easy access point?

Knowing what might be attracting the criminal is your first step towards improving your security at home.

2. Secure the Obvious

Doors and windows are the typical access points which criminals will force to open and get inside your home. You can reinforce your doors by replacing regular locks with stronger deadbolts, and you can swop those wooden frames with steel frames. Make sure your windows lock correctly by installing window latches which will double the security around your windows. Also, make sure the intruders cannot see your valuables from the outside and to have curtains or blinds to hide you belonging away from those criminals who might be scouting for their next target.

If you have the budget, the best option, of course, will be to install a home security system. This can range in prices, depending on your needs. Also, if you are renting a place, do not just assume that the landlord has changed the locks. Make sure you are the only person with that key and hound the landlord to change the locks on the doors if you must.

3. Make Your Home Unapproachable

Intruders will think twice to approach a home where there is no hiding place and where they will be noticed quickly.

Make sure the view of your doors are not blocked from your neighbors so that it will eliminate the chances of a home invasion. Too many shrubs or bushes can also make a great hiding place for thieves, so make sure to trim them if they are too close to your home.

Another great way to keep intruders away is to have a light at your front door, either one that is motion sensitive or one that you can leave burning all night.

4. Fake Your Security

If you are renting a place or you do not have the budget to install a fancy security system, then you will have to pretend like you are covered.

You can have fake security cameras around your home or a dog motion alarm that will bark when people approach the door. If you a have a car alarm, remember that the alarm button can scare off criminals if you suspect someone is trying to get into your home.

Fake signs are also a great way to pretend that you have an alarm system or security cameras. You can even get yourself a doggy water bowl to place outside and a “beware of the dog” sign. If you want to be different and have the intruders walking wide circles around your home, you can even go so far by placing a “caution, snake breeder” sign in the window.

5. Have Support

If you are not too much of a loner, knowing your neighbour is an excellent way to create extra support. Friendly neighbours always look out for one another, and one might help you out by keeping an eye on your home while you are out. Neighbours that work together are more likely to realise if anything suspicious is going on around the neighbourhood.

Make sure you know who to call in case of an emergency. The best option would be of course to have a security system that alerts the authorities right away. However, one can also find various emergency apps online that one can use in case you suspect an intruder in your home.

If you were out with a friend or family member at night, call each other at the end of the evening to check if each one has arrived safely inside their house.

6. Appear to Be Living with Someone

The idea is not to make it evident for criminals that you are living alone. Try to give the illusion that you and more people are at home by keeping on a couple of lights on or installing timers for certain lights at scheduled times. Leaving the radio or TV turned can also be useful and fool the burglar.

When you have the maintenance guy over, make sure to invite a friend so that it seems like you have a roommate. Be sure to never tell strangers that you are living alone!

7. Always Be on Guard

Home invasions can happen anytime during the day or night, so never let your guard down, even if you think attackers will not take their chances in daylight. When approaching your front door, always have your keys prepared and be aware of your surroundings and whether anything looks out of place.

When you are getting all social online, remember that friends of friends with bad intentions might be seeing your social media post as well, so never make it public when you are home alone or away from home.

Leaving an empty box of an expensive appliance that you just bought next to your outside garbage bins is a good advertisement of your belonging, which you should be cautious off.

Extra Tip

It is unfortunate that we live in such a world where we need to fear for our safety, but it is a reality in specific areas. Instead of complaining and living inside a box, we can get informed and prepare ourselves for the worst case scenario.

Becoming physically and mentally prepared is the best way to stay safe and secure whether you are in your home or on the street. Carrying some pepper-spray and going to self-defence classes will give you the upper hand during a home invasion. 



Author: Matthew James

Matt James is a freelance writer specialised in home improvement, smart technology, architecture & design. He has a love of outdoors and spending time with his dog Cooper. You can reach him on Instagram and Facebook.

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The security system is one thing you should definitely consider if you are planning on home improvements. Whether you choose a professionally installed security system or a DIY IP Camera, both will come with pros and cons. Therefore, your choice will be based on what fits your circumstances & pocket best. If you choose the DIY route, it may be because you may be renting a home or maybe you just don't feel like investing in to product or contracts, professionals have to offer.

 

DIY home security systems are these days easier than ever, and they can even help to conserve your budget when you choose the right pick. Changing technologies has made most of security system into mobile apps, just Plug & Play

 Here are some tips on how you can go about setting up the security system in your home.

 

1. Re-purpose Old Gadgets

Your previous phone, tablet, webcam can be used as a security camera at your home. Keep in mind, the amount of surveillance will be limited to the ability of re-purposed devices. The first thing to do is to choose the location which you want to have under surveillance (Outdoor surveillance can’t be done)

 

Next, you need to position the device so that it covers the right areas. Make sure that there is a plug source close to the device to ensure that it will be powered 24/7. A good wi-fi connection is must, if you want surveillance around the clock. Make sure to connect your device to the wi-fi for video streaming.

 

Your dedicated surveillance will be ready to use as soon as you install a program that allows you to transmit a live-feed stream on the web. Examples of an app that allows motion detection and live streaming from anywhere through the web for free

 

If you choose to set up your computer's webcam, you can use free software like iSpy, and even a new Skype account can be created for surveillance purposes only.

 

2. Invest In An Off The Shelf Camera

 

Most of the latest security comes with great features and are easy to setup and operate. Some of these features may include motion alerts, built-in speakers, microphones, night vision and some might even have smart intelligent motion tracking. Examples of web-connected security cameras with all of the above features are The Nest Cam, Arlo, FOSCAM.

 

Another great system is the FOSCAM E1 which works indoors and outside. This camera does not need cables as it works with batteries. What is excellent is that comes with a lowest cost cloud plan which can record up to seven days’ worth of recordings in the cloud.

 

3. DIY Vs. All-around Security Solution

 

If you feel you want more than just an eye on your home, there are many all-around systems on the market which you can set up yourself or Agencies that offer such services. This kind of devices will allow you to see and hear what is happening in your home at anytime from anywhere. These systems are smart systems that come with motion detection that will alert you. If services are taken up they also alert law enforcement authorities when something suspicious is going on.

 

Choose all-around security system which offers an HD live stream, motion detection, intrusion alarms, smoke/gas alarm and even few has temperature, humidity, and air quality sensors (based on area of living these can be integrated). The integrated alarms will scare any intruder away, which makes it a self-contained home security system. Systems that work with Amazon, Alexa, Google Assistant, and Wink are a plus

 

The best thing about the latest security system is that you do not have to pay loads of money for installation as most of them are designed to have a simple setup.

 

It comes down to what kind of area you live in, and what kind of security/monitoring needs you requires, a regular monitoring when you are at work/vacation then DIY installation might be good sufficient.

 

However, if you think you need more coverage, to protect your luxury home and valuable at home. Working families with kids with special needs or elderly parents then a simple phone security may not be sufficient. It is best to invest in an all-around security system that will alert you when something is not right in multiple channels as well can look at enrolled services that alert relevant authorities like law enforcement agencies or ambulance service based on the alert they receive (such service do come at capital cost and well as annual maintenance contract costs)

 

Mattea Jacobs is a freelance writer who mostly writes about both interior and exterior home design, and environmentally-friendly ways to improve homes. She is also a green activist and a mother of two beautiful sons. 

You can reach her on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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