Deterring Break-ins: 5 Places You Might Have Forgotten to Secure
Most intruders gain access right through the front door, and this is why the main door of a home is usually the most fortified. Homeowners everywhere are installing solid main doors and adding secure lock sets and deadbolts, however, when one way in for criminals is denied, they look for an alternate. Unfortunately, many homeowners overlook other easy ways into their homes, so use this list to make sure your home is secure.
The Back Door
Since visitors, deliveries, and the home owner come through the front door, most forget abou the back or side entrance door, and it is often lacking in structural strength and a decent lock. During the warmer months, back doors are routinely left unsecured as children and adults are outside constantly, and since the back door is also usually hidden from street view making it a better point of access for criminals hoping to avoid detection.
Homes that have an attached garage have a door inside the garage that leads directly into the home, and attached garages usually have an exterior access door in addition to the big garage doors. Exterior garage doors rarely have the same intrusion protection as the main door of a home, and many homes never lock the door that leads from the garage into the house. Criminals can then quickly get in the garage’s contents, and unimpeded access to the house once inside.
Second Floor Windows
The basement door of a home is often the most overlooked entry point of a home, a surprising amount of homeowners admit to it is often left unlocked and unchecked for weeks or even months at a time. A basement door is also usually the cheapest door installed on a house. In home construction, attention is paid to the main and back doors of the home. The basement door is often an inexpensive, unpainted wood core door that can easily be kicked in. The door is also likely to only have an inexpensive lockset with no deadbolt.
Second and First Floor Windows
Windows at ground and second floor level are easy access points, especially true for the second floor, where windows are more likely to be unlocked. Windows on porches and decks usually do not even require any climbing to get through, so these are hot spots for break-ins. Simply checking to make sure that the windows are locked before leaving can deter many would-be intruders looking for an easy target, and the other issue is the cheap plastic locking mechanisms on most windows that can be circumvented with a screwdriver in seconds.
Evergreen shrubs are popular landscaping plants placed around the perimeter of a home, and when first planted, they are too low to hide behind, but after a couple of seasons of growth, they provide excellent concealment for a criminal to work at opening a window. Shrubbery around stoops, decks or porches at entrance doors can conceal criminal activity. Trellises that support roses and ivy, along with plants such as palmetto grasses, also provide concealment, so keep plants and objects around doors or windows small and low so a person cannot use them to hide.
Look for ways into your home, consider objects, plants and other things that could provide concealment or aid for criminals intent on breaking in. Fortify entry points using stronger materials, protective devices and strong locks, and these small changes can greatly improve home security.
This article was written on behalf of HomeSecuritySystems.com by Mike. For those currently looking into securing your home, please go to http://www.homesecuritysystems.com/.