Home invasions are becoming more and more frequent these days as thieves are beginning to use powerful technologies such as iPhone apps and Google maps in carrying out their devious acts. Updating yourself on the bouts of crime in your area, knowing what technologies are being used against you and installing a home defense system in your home will ensure you have the upper hand to better secure your home from these desperate individuals.

To discourage criminals from breaking in and entering your home, you will need preventative measures that will advertise to home invaders to stay away from your home as well as warn them of what lies ahead if they were caught. These preventative measures can be put in place to keep these scums as far away from your house as possible

First Layer: Outside Layer

  • Reinforced doors. A normal door offers only 1" protection. Reinforce your doors and locks by upgrading and strengthening your deadbolt and lockset. Invest in heavy duty doors hinges and frames. Never rely on chain latches as barrier. They can be easily broken.

  • Doors that are not see through. Never give scums the advantage of having a clear view of what you have or how things work inside your home. Criminals are good at figuring out household patterns, which they can use to their advantage. Installing a peep hole allows you instead to see who's outside your door even before you open it.

  • Motion detector lights around the perimeter of your house can warn you of possible threats.

  • Spiked gate or fences will prevent would-be invaders from jumping over and getting inside.

  • A spare key hidden under a flower pot or door mat is tantamount to an invitation. Since many people still do this, they are the first place many burglars are going to look.

  • Having a guard dog trained to attack is one of the most effective and reliable deterrents against home invasion. Just don't forget to put a "beware of dog" signs in the front and side gates that would serve as a warning.

  • Remove large trees and bushes near the windows that can possibly provide concealment and access inside.

Second Layer: Inside Layer

  • Invest in an alarm system and post signs and stickers outside your home to advertise you have one installed. Studies show that visible signs of alarm systems installed in a building immediately discourage most burglars from breaking in.

  • Ensure you have two-way voice feature installed with your home alarm system enabling your security system to directly communicate through the control panel. This will also allow you to call into your security system, listen to activities happening inside or speak to a family member or your child who is at home.

  • Strategically position surveillance cameras in hidden or visible areas. Hidden cameras will capture live images of criminals when they least expect it, and visible cameras let them think twice before entering your home.

  • Emergency plans and protocols should be placed in places where your children and other family members can see them, together with emergency contact numbers such as 911 next to the plan.

  • Money, jewelry, car keys and other valuable items must be kept away from windows where burglars can see them and make them want to break in more.

  • Though having a gun may seem useful at times, it is extremely a deadly thing to keep inside the house especially if there are children around. Make sure that it is locked up in a safe place away from the reach of children.

Third Layer: Knowledge Layer

A person who is prepared is a person who is equipped with knowledge about the home's security features, how to get family members to safety, where to get help, and how to use a weapon as a last resort.

  • Teach family members especially the younger ones to be observant when coming and leaving home.

  • Teach children not to be easily persuaded to open doors to strangers, even those who show badges and look professional.

  • Teach children to call "safe adults" such as your trusted neighbors in case they need help and you are not at home. This is a good time to get to know your neighbors and identify some whom you can trust and leave their phone numbers to your children in case your children need help while you are not around.

  • Teach all family members how to use the alarm system or how to activate a panic button or car alarm.

  • Teach older family members how to use a weapon as a last resort. Taking self-defense lessons is quite handy when you are up against people trying to break in your home and endangering the lives of your loved ones or yourself. Encourage your teen or other capable adults at home to take these lessons, too.

Home security these days needs more than just solid doors and strong locks or constant reminders for children not to open doors to strangers. A well-thought security and safety plan thoroughly discussed with the whole family members will help outline protocols to follow during emergencies. Things can happen too fast during emergencies. When adrenaline kicks in, it's either fight or flight sometimes. This could lead to rushed emotions, anxiety or panic. Practicing emergency plans several times and investing in security alarm systems will offer a much needed peace of mind for everyone in the house.

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