Holiday Season Security Tips
Here are the top 10 home security tips as we approach the holiday season.
1. Lock up
While this may be obvious, it is often overlooked. Deadlocks and window locks operated with a key not only make it much harder to break into the home but also can prevent an easy exit, making it harder for burglars to remove large items from your home.
Remember, don’t make it easy for criminals – don’t keep a spare house key under the front doormat, over the top of the door, in the mail or metre box, under a fake stone or in the nearby garden bed.
2. Don't forget to lock up the shed, garage and side gates as well
Shed’s and garages are inviting to thieves as they are seldom used or locked. If you can possibly avoid it, do not use a shed to store valuable items.
3. Visibility increases security
Keep the place tidy! Landscaping around your home should not only be attractive but also effective for security. Ensure trees and shrubs are trimmed so a clear view of your property is maintained.
Restrict bushes that could block the view of doorways, access paths and hiding spots under windows. Sensor lights that are activated by movement are an inexpensive and excellent deterrent for burglars.
4. Install a security alarm system
We strongly recommend consulting a professional locksmith when considering the installation of an alarm or home security system. There are many features that can enhance the security of your home and make you feel better when you go on holidays.
5. Don't advertise that you are out or away
Don’t announce to the world that you’re going on holidays or overseas for an extended period on Social Media. Facebook and Twitter may alert a thief to a potential burglary opportunity.
6. Don't provide temptation
Move valuable items so they can’t be seen from the windows. If you bought a new big screen television or home theatre system, don’t leave the packaging outside where it's visible.
This is also a great rule for items kept in your car when it's parked either at home or away.
7. Make it look like you are home
A letterbox full of mail, catalogues and junk mail is a sure sign that a house is unattended. Whether it be a vacated property or a family on vacation, it will spark an interest from thieves.
Ask a family member or neighbour to collect your mail whilst your away. Additionally, making sure the bins are out for rubbish collection (and subsequently put away), turning lights on, occasional watering of the garden or mowing of the lawns (if you’re lucky) will give the impression that someone is home.
If you have the paper, bread or milk delivered – don’t forget to have these suspended.
8. Peace of mind – Insurance
Identify your belongings, both at home and at work. Take photos of your valuable belongings or keep a register of important items (make, models and serial numbers). A walk-through of your house with a video camera, detailing items in cupboards will keep your insurance company very happy indeed.
Just remember to keep your photos, video tape or register secure – locked away in a safe is the ideal place.
Finally - be insured!
9. If it’s expensive, lock it up
If you have expensive jewellery, cash or other items that can’t be replaced at home – store them in a safe.
There are many cheap inferior products out in the market that are sold through hardware and retail outlets. If you’re investing in a safe then ensure the safe is right for and most importantly, it is installed correctly. Most burglars will attempt to take the safe with them so they can break into it without the pressure of time. If a safe is incorrectly installed, security of its contents is compromised.
Remember, the installation is just as important as safe itself!
10. Neighbourhood Watch
Neighbourhood watch is a group of community residents who keep a lookout for suspicious activity in their neighbourhood and report it to police. Does a neighbourhood watch group exist in your suburb? It may be well worth finding out.
If you have a good relationship with your next door neighbours, kindly ask them to keep an eye on things whilst your away!
The Master Locksmiths Association of Australasia (MLA) is recognised and respected as the peak organisation for locksmithing professionals in the Pacific region.
If you are unsure of what preventive measures or products are currently out in the market, ask a security professional or ‘locksmith’ for advice. MLA members are more than happy to discuss your security needs, whether it be commercial or domestic, and help you solve your security concerns
Visit www.masterlocksmiths.com.au to find your nearest member.