There are numerous options to consider when designing your security system—from the simple, to the complex— A quality home security system may be able to alert you to burglars before any major damage is done to your home and possessions. State-of-the-art technology combined with home automation means home security is more advanced than ever. While it may save money in the long run by investing in professional security equipment, there are plenty of affordable options to consider if you’re worried about breaking the bank. When it comes to choosing home security, it all depends on the wants and needs of you, your family, and your home.
Most smart security technology can be controlled remotely through an app, which can notify you with real-time alerts. In a well-engineered system, individual products can interact with each other and combine your smart home automation with your security system. For example, a camera could alert your system to the presence of a burglar and trigger a smart light to turn on while your camera starts recording.
When thinking about home security, consider your priorities and needs. There are a number of effective high-tech ways to keep burglars at bay, so feel free to explore your options.
#1. Outdoor Cameras
Outdoor cameras give you the ability to have eyes on your exterior property, like your backdoor, gates, garage, or yards. Many burglaries happen at night, and outdoor cameras will alert you of activity while you’re soundly sleeping. Additionally, if a would-be intruder sees a camera mounted on the outside of your home, they may think twice about burglarizing your home, since they know they’re being watched. When choosing an outdoor camera, you should consider the following features:
Whether the camera can record in High HD resolution (1080p) because you may want to zoom in to see details in the image.
Whether the camera has night-vision capabilities that provide the ability to both record and alert you to activity on your property after dark.
Whether the field of view is wide enough to cover the most area per camera.
How durable the camera is. Durability is an important feature, particularly with outdoor cameras, as they need to withstand the elements.
Whether the camera allows you to interact with surprise visitors using two-way audio.
Whether the camera can integrate with smart lights to trigger responses to actions like motion in the driveway.
#2. Indoor Cameras
Indoor cameras allow you to see what’s going on inside your home. While you’re away, you can watch for activity---whether it’s the kids getting home safe from school or if your cat is scratching at the couch again. Some indoor cameras give you the ability to interact with people and pets via two-way audio, while others move to track motion.
#3. Doorbell Cameras
Doorbell cameras may allow you to check for package deliveries, see when people are coming and going, or potentially catch a thief stealing packages off your porch.
#4. Motion Sensors
Motion sensors are usually tied to alarms or security cameras in and outside your home, and are meant to ward off intruders. If they’re triggered, it’ll set off an alarm. Motion sensors may be configured to work with your cameras to tell them to start recording if they pick up movement. Many modern motion sensors can also be “pet friendly,” preventing false alarms when small pets move around the house.
#5. Glassbreak Sensors
Glassbreak sensors are a great burglary deterrent, as they “listen” for glass breaking. As the glass breaks, the window will emit a high-frequency sound that alerts the sensor, and if professionally monitored, the police. Glassbreak sensors are typically placed in central locations because they may have the ability to listen to multiple windows.
#6. Door and Window Sensors
Door and window sensors alert you when a specific door or window has been opened. The sensors are triggered when the magnetic connection is broken as the door or window is opened. You can also be alerted if a window or door is left opened for an extended period of time, or if it’s still open when your system is armed. Aside from these, there are other ways to keep your windows and doors secure.
#7. Garage Sensors
Many burglars aim for the garage, as this is where expensive items like cars, bicycles, and lawn equipment are stored. A garage door sensor, also known as a “tilt” sensor, detects the status of a vertically opening door, such as a garage door. If a garage door is left open or if it’s opened while you’re away, the sensor will let you know.
#8. Smart Locks
Smart locks effortlessly sync with your smart home system and can be programmed for individual users. Some even come with facial recognition. Smart locks reduce the need for keys, giving you the option to lock and unlock your door with a keypad or the app on your phone. You can customize a code for each member of your family, or you can have one code that everyone uses. Codes can also be set temporarily for the neighbor keeping an eye on your home while you’re on vacation, or they can be used frequently by the dog walker that comes by daily.
#9. Smart Lighting
With smart lights, you can control the lighting of your home in the palm of your hand or with the sound of your voice. Smart lights can be scheduled to turn on and off at designated times and many can be switched off and on remotely from an app. While you’re home, smart lights can be controlled by your smart home assistants.
When it comes to burglars, the amount of light produced by outdoor floodlights make it hard for them to go undetected. And lights that are triggered by motion via cameras can quickly brighten designated areas, so if someone makes a sudden movement, the lights will trigger and put the intruder on the spot.
#10. Professional Monitoring
When an alarm goes off from your home, every second counts. Having a fast response time is crucial to helping keep you and your home safe and dispatching local authorities if you need assistance. When you choose to go with a professional security company, it means you’ll have an extra layer of protection. With 24/7 monitoring available, you’ll always have someone on hand to help and/or contact the authorities in case of a burglary.
Securing your home doesn’t have to be expensive. There are many cheap—even free—to make criminals think twice about burglarizing your home.
#11. Talk to Your Neighbors
Even if you aren’t a social person, it doesn’t hurt to talk to those around you. Having someone watch your home for suspicious activity, especially if you’re away for a long period of time, like a vacation, can be a great help if you’re worried about burglaries. It's also a good idea to see if your area has a neighborhood watch program, which can increase your feeling of security.
#12. Protect Your Mail and Packages
Mail theft is a growing problem since unsecured mailboxes are easy targets. One sure way to keep thieves from stealing your mail is to use a security mailbox. Once the mail is dropped in, you need a key to open the box. Just screw it to the wall or post as you would a standard mailbox.
Tracking packages on your smart devices and choosing a delivery window for when you’ll be home will help keep them from being stolen. Requiring a signature when your packages are delivered adds an extra layer of protection. If you’re away from home, like on vacation, see if a trusted neighbor can accept or sign for your packages in your place.
#13. Get a Security System Sign
Many home security companies provide a yard sign or window sticker to advertise their services. If a criminal sees one of these, they may think twice about targeting your home, as they believe it to be well protected. However, it’s not advised to use a fake security sign as a deterrent, as it can cost you money in the long run if your home is burglarized, and even lead to legal action.
#14. Pretend You’re at Home
While it may slightly increase your energy bill, one of the best ways to deter burglars is to make them think someone is home, as most tend to target homes they think are empty. If you’re away for the night or a long period of time, keep the TV or radio on to generate noise. You can also leave both indoor and outdoor lights on, so it gives the impression that someone is there. You may also want to leave your car in the driveway, so a burglar will believe someone is inside, though now it may instead leave your car open to be vandalized.
#15. Get a Dog
A furry friend, like a large dog, can detect suspicious activity if trained properly. If your dog barks frequently and loudly at the sound of motion, especially if it’s unwarranted, it may be enough to scare a burglar away.
#16. Keep Your Lawn Looking Fresh
While it adds a layer of privacy, trees and bushes that conceal windows and doors are also ideal ways for a criminal to have coverage. Also, if your lawn looks unkempt, it gives the impression that no one is taking care of it---or hasn’t been home in a while—so a burglar may think your home is an easy target.
#17. Stay Smart on Social Media
Remember that social media is built to be public, which means that it’s a bit like talking to a crowd with a megaphone. Don’t share travel plans unless you’re comfortable with your entire social media community knowing about them. Social media accounts often default to a public setting, meaning criminals can simply search for keywords like “trip”, “travel”, “vacation”, or “out of town”, and find descriptions of the dates and times of when you’re leaving your home. To avoid this, wait until after your trip to share information about your vacation. If you feel the need to let people know you’ll be out of town ahead of time, take a few moments to ensure that your post is marked as private through that social media platform. By limiting its audience and its searchability, you can make sharing your schedule much more secure. If you are looking for a professionally monitored home security system, contact Brinks Home™ today and we can help you design a security system that works for you.
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