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Outdoor home security: 5 steps to a home-safe-home

Jun 01, 2015 02:36PM ● Published by Savannah Ludwig

Did you know a home break-in occurs every 15 seconds? Considering summertime is peak season for home burglaries, there's no better time than the present to take a few steps to protect your home and your family.

"Securing your home doesn't necessarily require a costly alarm system," says Brian Sweet, operations manger at D&D Technologies, an award-winning lock and safety company. "Taking a close look at your outdoor spaces and making simple safety updates will dramatically reduce the chances of your home becoming a criminal target."

These four simple steps can all be completed in one weekend to help keep your property safe and give you peace of mind:


1. Trim landscaping

Well-manicured landscaping not only beatifies your yard, it also helps deter thieves. Why? Overgrown trees and shrubs make it easy to stay concealed day or night. Pay special attention to proper trimming around windows, doors and other points of entry into your home or garage.


2. Verify lighting

Take a walk around your home in the evening and check for areas of poor lighting. Fronts of homes often have good lighting, but sides and backyards have excessive dark space. One of the easiest ways to increase evening security is by adding motion lights. When these lights sense movement, they activate and illuminate a space; this is great if you're fumbling for your keys in the dark and bad for thieves who want to stay hidden.


3. Careful with extra keys

It's common for families to hide a spare key at their home, but too often it's in an obvious location like under the doormat, above the doorframe or by a landscape rock. It takes just seconds for a thief to check these common locations. Instead, leave a set of keys with a trusted neighbor or, at the very least, select a well-hidden location that would be difficult for a stranger to find.


4. Keep valuables out of sight

During the summer, the garage door is open, the toys are out and you spend more time in your yard. While enjoying the outdoors is great, beware about showing off too many of your valuable possessions. An open garage door can easily make a new car or box of expensive tools visible to anyone. Leaving expensive recreational toys - from bikes to boats - in your driveway signals clearly that you have money. Have fun but be careful, because you never know who is watching and you may be unknowingly signaling to all who walk or drive past your house that the garage is packed with goodies.


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