Most of us have seen the Home Alone movies and are aware that there are bad people out there, even in the best of places. Rather than stocking your entrances with M-80’s and the 1930’s black and white film Angels with Filthy Souls video (Home Alone reference), there are many other ways to help keep your home safe during the holidays, whether you’re at home, out of town, or just at work during the days. Here are some great tips on how to keep your home safe during this holiday season:
1. Company monitored home alarm system
If you’re the type of person who is always on the go and do not have time to monitor your own security system, it may be a good idea to look into a professionally monitored home security company. What they say is mostly true, ‘you get what you pay for.’ Going with a locally owned company without a longstanding reputation for security may be a cheaper option, but on the other hand they may not have the manpower to handle your home security situation. A long standing company such as ADT may be something to look into to give yourself a bit more piece of mind knowing they have a full blow process that has been ironed out for years.
2. Beware of Prying ‘Professionals’
Again, referencing one of our favorite holiday movies, #6 is delivered to you by the 1990 Home Alone movie. In the beginning you see Joe Pesci standing in the front entrance of the McCallister household posing as a police officer. We all know who he turned out to be, and we’re not saying this exact instance is going to happen in your house or neighborhood, but it’s always good to keep an eye out for service professionals posted in your neighborhood for days at a time within the weeks prior to the holidays. We’ve all seen it before in the movies, burglars and spies sitting in the random ‘Gutter Cleaning’ truck monitoring the neighborhood, but the truth is, these types of things do happen, even in the nicest of neighborhoods – that’s why they’re posted there, it’s a nice neighborhood with homes that have nice things inside them. Follow the next tip to keep more eyes suspicious parked vehicles on your block.
3. Be Neighborly
This one may seem like a no brainer, but touching base with your neighbors and becoming friends with them is not all that bad of an idea (even if they’re kindof weird). If you just moved in or looking at buying a house, it’s good to be neighborly in your new community. We’re not suggesting making plans with them every Wednesday night for game night but give them your cell phone number and you can look out for them while their out, and they can look out for you as well. Depending on your neighborly relationship, they probably already know what vehicles frequently travel to your home. We suggest to start a quick conversation that if they see any other vehicles in your driveway or out front of your house, if they ever notice something, a quick text to say ‘hey there is a random vehicle parked in front of your home’ can save you a huge headache and insurance report if your home is being burglarized.
4. Reinforcing Doors & Windows
This is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to secure your doors and windows. You can do this in two separate ways. One is to cut a piece of wood, wooden dowel, PVC piping, basically anything that you will be able to nudge up to the opening. This route will allow you to manually place and remove the reinforcement whenever you choose to use it. This technique is especially handy if you have a sliding glass door with a doggy door insert. Simply measure the opening of the door or window and write the measurement down (Pro tip: measure twice, cut once) and then cut the material to size. Once the reinforcement piece is cut to size, slide one end into the opening and then press against the surface and slide it in a diagonal motion to reinforce the door or window. If you’re not a big DIY’er, you can buy locking bars too. The second way to reinforce a sliding glass door or window is to buy a secondary door/window lock that will require use of a drill to make holes, and then screws should be provided where you can secure the locking mechanism to the door or window. There are many types of locking mechanisms, some with keys, others with flip switches that prevent the door from opening, make the best choice for your home’s situation.
5. Garage door window frosting
This idea is pretty much genius if you ask us. If you have a garage door with windows in it, burglars tend to look for these as they can see what’s in the garage. They may not be looking to see what ‘items’ you have in the garage, but more-so if your vehicles are in the garage. With no vehicles in the driveway and none in the garage, paired with no animals, security signage or visible cameras; this may be a trifecta for the thief to choose your home to break into over the neighbor’s house. Simply buy a can or two of white Christmas window frost from the store and essentially ‘white out’ those garage door windows to avoid anyone being able to peek inside.