Living alone for the first time means independence and self-sufficiency in managing a household of your own. That includes home security, which is often a big priority for people living alone for the first time.
Home burglaries and break-ins have risen in Australia in the past year. In the last twelve months, 238,100 households have experienced a break-in, while nearly double that number have experienced malicious property damage.
These are alarming numbers, especially when you consider the vulnerable people who live alone; single women, students or graduates in their first apartments or older people who have no family members with them could become easy targets. Unscrupulous individuals typically seek out people living alone in particular, as they present less of a threat and less of a challenge if an altercation were to occur as they break in.
So, if you live alone, you have every reason to be worried about your safety. But you might be surprised at how easy it is to improve the security of your home and protect yourself. All it takes are a few upgrades, and you’ll find yourself with a little more peace of mind.
Install a doorbell camera.
You might have seen doorbell cam videos floating around on the internet where you see suspicious activity getting caught in HD. Doorbell cams such as Amazon’s Ring Camera act as both a doorbell and a surveillance camera. They can sense movement outside of your home, recognize faces, and act as an intercom, so you don’t even have to come to the door to answer it if someone unexpectedly knocks.
These cameras connect to an online service, so you can check the camera no matter where you are. If it sends a notification that it sees someone or something moving outside, you can come online to check the camera’s live feed. You can even speak out of the intercom if you need to talk to anyone outside the door.
Reinforce patio doors or install safety doors.
It’s especially critical to install security doors in a home because open patios with a view of the water are popular among residences in the area. Because of this, home invaders are well aware that there is a great spot to enter the house. Entering through patio doors is a common tactic for burglars that some insurance providers warn their customers about their dangers.
Even though most sliding patio doors have locks, the frame or the glass is easy to break. A thief can crack through them with simple tools or even with brute force. It’s recommended to install security doors with a grill or a screen over them that enables the doors to withstand force.
Set up automatic lights.
If you work away from home, you can install timers for your house or garden lights. You can set the lights to switch on at a specific time, so they illuminate even while you’re away. If the lights are on inside the house, it suggests that someone is home or awake, and an intruder will be less likely to attempt illegal entry. You might even want to install an automatic switch for radio or speakers inside the house to play music and add to the illusion that someone is home.
Add a bolt lock to your doors and locks for windows.
A lock on your doorjamb is not enough these days when intruders can kick down a door with force. A second lock, such as a durable deadbolt or a bar lock, makes the entryway more secure and far more difficult to force open. These types of locks are not easy to pick from the outside. So even if your door lock gets picked, the bolt keeps your door closed.
You can also secure your windows with bolt locks or specially designed window locks. Even childproofing locks will help prevent someone on the outside from sliding or pulling a window open and coming in while you’re unaware.
Remember that it’s always a good idea to take a “security lap” around your home before you leave or after you arrive and before you go to bed. As someone living alone, you can’t take chances with your safety or that of your home. While these methods can’t guarantee a burglar-proof home, adding these upgrades to your residence gives you a much better chance of keeping thieves and home invaders away and allow you to take control of your protection.