How To Protect Your Home From Intruder
Whether you awaken in the middle of the night to a startling sound, or you’re away on holiday and worried about your home, you can take these precautions to ensure that intruders stay out, and don’t get what they’re after. There are 1,030,000 home invasions every year in the United States; that’s over 2,800 homes every single day of what’s reported. Keep yourself prepared, and you’ll be thanking yourself in the event of a home burglary or invasion in the future. Some of these are preventative measures, and some thwart invaders in the act.
Gather Self-Defense Weapons
We don’t want to startle you, but we’d like to start with the worst-case scenario, which is having to defend yourself in a hostile situation. If someone invades your home and doesn’t care about the camera or alarms, they could be entering with vicious intent, and not just looking to pawn off your television and PlayStation system.
Self-defense weapons doesn’t have to be terrifying to keep around children; you can put them in accessible, yet still hard-to-reach areas in each room of your house. You can keep a tactical flashlight in the kitchen, a stun gun on the shelf in the living room, and tons of other inconspicuous places that won’t be visible or expected by a home intruder.
Investing in self-defense weapons also allows you to maintain pacifism is you aren’t interested in bringing firearms into your harm. No self-defense weapons are designed to provide fatal injuries to your attacker, but they will blind, disorient or deter them from continuing what they’re doing until the police arrive, or you can chase them from the property.
Self-defense weapons are also something you can use to teach your children about protecting themselves. Many parents get keychain self-defense flashlights and deterrents to hang on their child’s backpacks when they’re travelling to and from school. You can never be too careful.
Install a Smart Hub System to Act Quickly
Smart hubs are going to majorly come into play for the rest of what we’re discussing. Let’s say the intruder is already in your home. They didn’t see the camera system outside, and they’ve entered through the door. You can call out to your smart home device, like your Amazon Echo, and ask Alexa to contact the police or raise all the Wi-Fi-enabled alarms in the house. You can even do this from your Echo Dot in your bedroom, so you don’t have to go toe-to-toe with the invader.
These alarms are enough to get just about anyone to turn tail and run. It shows that you’re prepared, and most likely linked up to the local police. It puts a very narrow escape window on their activities, and while you don’t want them to get away, you do want them out of your home and away from your family. If they manage to evade police in the response time window, you can better believe they’re not going to try your house again.
Smart hubs also let you access surveillance cameras handsfree, enable smart light bulbs and other methods to prevent burglars from entering your home in the first place. The goal is avoidance, and the backup plan is startling the invader with your digital fortress until they run out the door.
Invest in a Home Safe
If you’re away on holiday, you’re actually more likely to be targeted for a home invasion. Criminals don’t just pick a random house and decide to jump into it, they look for signs of wealth, they “case” the place, or monitor activity. If you’re leaving on vacation, you need to leave behind a secure home. We’ll talk about more deterrents in a minute, but if those fail and they enter your home anyway, then you’ll need a secondary line of defense.
If your alarms don’t alert the police, you need your most valuable assets to be protected. That means credit cards that aren’t on your person, documents, bank records, identification and passports, and family heirlooms. Invest in a home safe, even a fireproof home safe and find a secure area to stash it, or consider getting it affixed to your floor or the studs of your home.
It isn’t ideal, but since you can’t predict every movement in a home invasion, you can replace a television, you can buy another couch, but some things just can’t be replaced. If this has you worried, fear not; there are plenty of ways to force intruders away, and even deter them from entering your home in the first place, even if you’re on vacation.
Equip Your Home With Security Alarms
Alarms are an indicator that nothing is going to get past you. Whether you’re upstairs in your bed or just on the couch enjoying a movie, you’ll immediately be alerted to intrusive activity. You can reach for your self-defense weapons, or you can let the magic of the alarm do the trick. Not only can you link these up to immediately notify the police that something isn’t right, but it will most likely cause the invader to flee the scene before anything even happens.
There’s a stigma that a home alarm isn’t going to really do anything. There are plenty of scenarios where an alarm could be the difference between your safety, and a skirmish with an armed invader. It will notify police right away, and burglars know this. If the alarm goes on for too long and isn’t hooked up to the police, your neighbors will call the police (this is more likely if you’re away from home on vacation). Alarms tell the intruder that their hand has been caught in the cookie jar. Their odds of a successful heist are immediately crushed, their chances get dicey, and they flee.
Take a Self-Defense Class
If you have a self-defense weapon, it’s better than being bare-handed. If you aren’t in good range of your self-defense weapons, then you’ll have to rely on your own physical prowess. Taking a self-defense class in a highly combative skill, such as krav maga, can not only help you in a heated situation, but can also give you the confidence that you’ll need in a dodgy spot. Self-defense is about mentally building yourself up to a confrontation, as well as physically.
Consider Getting Smart Light Bulbs and Electrical Outlets
Wi-Fi light bulbs and outlets; who knew we would get to this point? These actually serve a huge purpose for when you’re home, and when you’re away on a trip. You can set these to activate at intervals throughout the night to make it appear like you’re home. It promotes erratic activity, so if a home invader has been casing your house for a few days, they won’t be able to paint a picture of your habits and regular activity times. It could be enough to prevent a breaking and entering altogether.
This also works well with your smart outlets. You can enable them to turn on the television, music, or just about anything that it connects to in order to give the appearance of being home when you’re not. Keep in mind, this preventative method works best if you have a closed garage so potential invaders can’t determine if you’re home or not.
Monitor Activity with Security Cameras
You’ll see a ton of different “cheap methods” to make your home safer, and one of them is putting up dummy cameras to deter criminals. Could this work? Potentially, but it’s not going to do you any favors if someone ignores those cameras and barges through your door anyway. The first point is to ensure that your family is safe, but if you can lend the footage to the police to track down the burglar, you can sleep easier at night knowing that they’re going to be put behind bars.
The aesthetic of cameras do actually make your home appear more impenetrable, and that can deter criminals. However, criminals are smart, and will look for wires running into the home or an LED indicator light. There’s just as much information available online for them to use against you as there is for you to use against them, so don’t take the risk of getting a faulty or useless security camera system.
Don’t Make the First Move
The first one that strikes is often the first to fall. If you’re in a combative situation with an invader, the worst thing you can do is go in for the first move in a self-defense situation. This shows that you’re eager, frightened, and also a rookie when it comes to defending yourself. If someone else makes the first move, you have time to respond appropriately, and the upper hand when it comes to a fight.
Fortify the Homestead with Smart Locks
Smart locks have become an insanely useful tool to prevent invaders from entering your house in the first place. Since they’re usually accompanied by a camera system or a smart doorbell (which we’ll get into in a moment), they’re an immediate deterrent for burglars trying to enter your home. They allow you to set up digital keys, so you can permit who comes and goes. If someone tries to pick the lock and doesn’t have a digital key, it can either activate your smart hub to contact the police, or set off your home alarm.
One of the best parts about smart locks is that you’re able to activate them from a smart hub with your voice. If you suspect someone’s coming up the driveway or you just don’t feel right, you can just call out to Alexa and ask her to check that all the doors are locked. Installing a smart lock is no cheap endeavor, but it can be extremely rewarding and take little to no time at all.
Motion Sensing Outdoor Lights
These are a minor addition that you should be using in sync with other methods, but an outdoor motion sensing light can immediately tell an intruder that you’re ready, and that they’ve made a mistake. In the event of you entering combat with an intruder, these outdoor lights can help police find their path and capture them before they’re able to escape and invade another family’s home. Coupled with security cameras, outdoor lights also let you know when something is fishy.
Get a Smart Doorbell System
Building on the idea of turning your home into a smart fortress, you’ll be able to monitor visitors and record via your smart doorbell system. Think of it as a one-way peephole with up to 1080p HD, something that records activity and stores it. Your smart doorbell can work in sync with your smart hub and lock; you can even program your doorbell to identify certain visitors and unlock the door with just your voice.
As with any exterior addition to your home, these are an enormous deterrent to being burglarized. Plenty of thieves know the cheap method of hanging surveillance cameras without plugging them in, and some are willing to take that risk. Nobody sets up a smart doorbell without actually activating it. It’s an immediate way to tell a potential burglar (coupled with a smart lock and cameras), that you’re beyond prepared for anything that’s going to come through that door.
Upgrade Your Window Locks
Standard window locks are sorely lacking in efficiency and pressure resistance. Upgrading your window locks may be a make or break feature for your home. If an invader sees that smart doorbell, lock and cameras, and they’re ambitious enough, they might try the windows. That’s because far too many Americans have little to no security on their windows.
You can activate locks to set off alarms, notify police, and if a thief is knowledgeable enough, they might be able to tell that these provisions are in place and leave altogether. While all of these upgrades work wonders, we also want to disclosure a few ways to prevent these issues from happening in the first place.
Alternative Methods for Preventing a Robbery or Home Invasion
1. Keep your yard landscaped. A clean yard shows that you pay attention to your home, but also gives burglars less places to hide in the dark.
2. Don’t show off how much money you have. The more money you have, the more likely you are to become the victim of a home invasion. Stick to inexpensive exterior decorations, hide your pricey grill, and keep those expensive cars in the garage.
3. Ask your trusted neighbor or house sitter to park in the driveway while you’re away, giving the illusion that someone is always home.
4. Don’t discuss vacation plans, unless it’s with your close friends or family, whom you can trust to not spread the information around. Nothing says “Break into my house” like knowledge of a ten-day vacation.
5. Keep the windows and blinds drawn. If you have a 70” curved UHD TV on the wall, make sure it’s not visible through the windows at street level, and so on.
6. It’s time to learn about the neighbors. Research suggests that burglaries don’t happen as often in close suburban environments.
Keep yourself and your family safe by fortifying your home, and learning how to handle yourself in combat should an invader push beyond all logic and reason, and continue into your smart fortress anyway.
It’s Time to Double up On Protection
Arm yourself, and fortify your home fortress to stop invaders before they ever target your home and family. Despite what people like to think, criminals are intelligent, and understand how much these preventative measures will lower their chance of success. It’s a numbers game to them, so spin the odds in your favor to have the best possible chance of remaining safe. Keep vigilant at all times, and give your family the peace of mind they need to live their lives with confidence.