Be Pro-active not re-active

Home Security - Be pro-active and not re-active to crime

A criminal doesn’t care if your property is old or new, owned or rented. There is no discrimination when it comes to crime.

The level of protection that you should choose should satisfy your security needs along with the needs of you family.

In this edition of Security Tips, we have consulted with MLAA Member, MLAA Trainer, Locksmith and Author Lance Leroux (Security on a Shoe String) as we look at ways you can increase the level of security of your home for less than the cost of an insurance deductible.

According to Lance ‘time is and always will be your principal means of defence. The more time the criminal takes in trying to gain access into your home or business, the greater the chance of him being caught'.

These simple tips can improve your level of security.

Upgrade your locking hardware

By upgrading your locking hardware you can increase the length of time it takes to break into your home or business. This is what the Police call ‘Target Hardening’.

If the criminal has to struggle, creating an excessive amount of noise to gain entry, he will usually go elsewhere. Also keep in mind that most locks are mechanical devices with a pre-determined life span. That is why it is important to check and re-evaluate your security hardware on a regular basis.

Visit your local locksmith to see what’s available in the market, they are more experienced and knowledgeable in what locking systems are out there compared to a clerk at a hardware store.

Locksmiths can also provide you with information on alternative security solutions such as keyless entry.

Entry Routes

Limit the amount of entry points into your property as it makes it easier to control security using one entranceway rather than several. Control the flow of traffic in and out of your property.


Landscaping around your home can be an effective means of security. Some of the following ideas need a little sweat and elbow grease, but can be very effective in deterring any would-be intruders.

Have a fresh layer of crushed gravel or stones placed around the base of the house, concentrating on areas around windows. Stepping on gravel, as we can all attest to, will announce any intruder. Plant thorny shrubs close to access areas. If anyone was to hide in the bushes in or around your home, they would find it very uncomfortable.

Ensure all trees and shrubs are properly trimmed and you have a clear view of your property and restrict the amount of bushes that block the view of doorways.

Keep the place tidy

The appearance of an unkempt residence gives the impression that ‘no one really cares’, while the sight of a tidy home and yard implies that the owners do care and value their possessions. People in well-kept homes will also quickly notice missing items.

Who’s out there?

Whether people have recently moved in or have lived there forever, get to know your neighbours. They can be a valuable ally in securing your home.

Who has the key?

An all too common security problem exists when people move and fail to collect all the house keys. Anyone holding one of these ‘loaned out’ or forgotten keys could then easily gain access. When moving into a new home, have the exterior locks re-keyed or install new locking hardware. This ensures you, and you alone, have an exclusive set of keys to the house.


Alarms are one of the great technical advances that we reply upon daily for our security. Home alarms also reduce insurance costs and can include many features that enhance your alarm system and make you feel better about your home security. Locksmiths are your perfect source for information on alarm types, sales and installation.

Motion Sensors

Motion sensors are very inexpensive and criminal deterrents. If a motion sensor is installed correctly and positioned at the right angle, the light will alert you to any intruder coming onto your property.

Not only are they a good security device, they also save you dollars on your electricity bill.

Blinds and Curtains

There are two theories about the benefits of keeping the blinds open or keeping them closed. If you are away, the main advantage of keeping them open is that it allows your neighbours to detect any unusual activity inside. Adversely, you are also advertising your possessions for thieves to steal.

The other method is to keep your curtains closed. The only problem is that neighbours cannot see any unusual activity inside your home. Adversely, if a thief has entered your home, a flashlight will be required to see its contents.

The solution, alert neighbours that you are going away for an extended period and inform them of whether you are leaving them open or closed. For other trips, get into the habit when leaving the house to remember how you left it. Were the curtains closed? The lights left on?

Leaving your curtains open or closed is a personal choice.

Outside Sheds

Sheds are often subject to intrusion by unwanted visitors. They are inviting to the thief because they are hardly used. Do not store valuable items in your shed. Secure your shed/garage doors with high grade locking hardware.


The Master Locksmiths Association of Australasia (MLAA) 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.

MLAA Members are more than happy to discuss your security needs, whether it be commercial or domestic, and help you solve your security concerns.

Visit to find your nearest locksmith or security professional.