When you have a home you want to make sure it is safe, especially if you have children. Here on Staten Island the crime rate has been going down with each passing year; in 2012 there were approximately 740 reports of burglary, according to the NYPD CompStat report. Home safety is not something to take lightly, but you may not have enough money to spend on an expensive security system so here are some cheap effective ways to protect your home.

Home SecuritySince most burglaries happen during the day here are some good tips to go by.

  • The most obvious way to help protect your home is to make sure all doors, windows, and garages are closed and locked when you leave the house. Make sure your home’s locking systems are sturdy, also. The locks on your windows and doors can become less effective after years of use. If they do seem to be not locking as well there are some options for you. If your window locks seem loose you can place a piece of dowel in the window or a piece of wood in the track of a sliding door, that way burglars cannot pry them open. You can change the locks on doors if necessary and make sure the entry doors have deadbolts that are securely in place. Another thing to check is if your doors are secure, if you have an older wood door it could be easy for a burglar to force open, so make sure you have a wood door that is solid or a metal door with a good frame for it.
  • While away on vacation make sure to keep your home looking like you are still there. You can do this by putting a hold on newspaper and mail deliveries—that way you don’t have a stack of newspapers sitting on your front lawn or a bunch of mail in your mailbox and you can put your inside lights on a timer that way they go on and off at certain times that you would be home or you can buy a random timer that way they go on and off at different times in case a burglar is staking the home out. Another option is to ask your neighbors to keep an eye on your home and if they see anything suspicious while you are away to call the police.
  • Burglars do come during the evening too, so make sure to have the outside of your home well lit. By installing motion-sensor lights it will throw a burglar off, but make sure that light covers any dark areas by windows and doors. You can also place thorny bushes under windows that way the burglar won’t want to walk into it and make sure to trim tree branches so that they are not near the higher floor windows to climb and get into easily.
  • Installing security cameras outside, even if they aren’t operational, pointing at front and back entranceways can also help. When a burglar sees a camera they are less likely going to try to break in. Since they are unaware if the camera is working or not, you may not need to actually have it set up, as long as it looks real it will do the job. There is a wide range of security camera options and depending on what you are looking to spend there should be something for you.
  • “Beware of Dog”—this is another great deterrent. Dogs can help ward off unwanted people from entering your home. Normally if a dog hears a noise they start barking, bringing attention to the home—which is something burglars do not want. Even if you don’t have a dog or just have a small dog, putting a “Beware of Dog” sign outside your home or a big dog dish in the backyard it may scare away the burglar.
  • Installing an alarm system is going to be the most costly, but could do the best work. Alarm systems could cost anywhere from $400 to $500 to install and then have a monthly payment of around $50. In some cases people buy an alarm system and then after a while stop using it, but that could be the time you need it most. If you do choose this option make sure to use it.
  • Lastly, just in case these steps do not work, make sure you have your personal documents and valuables locked away in a safe. Safes that are bolted to the floor are a better option, since it cannot be walked away with. Another item burglars go after are computers, so by not keeping passwords—for the computer and other accounts—out in the open and hidden is a good idea, also by storing documents in the “cloud” instead of on a hard drive it will protect you better.
Posted by Anthony Licciardello on


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