By David Lahav
Special to the AFRO
With the Covid-19 pandemic closing large swaths of the economy and keeping more of us cooped up in our houses, home security has become more important than ever. Sure, we usually associate home break-ins with the times when we’re not at home. And while intrusions are certainly more likely when you’re at work or on vacation, the stakes are higher when you and your family are at home. When the house is empty, the worst that can happen is that your belongings are stolen and your home vandalized. When you’re all at the house, it’s the lives and well-being of your family that are at stake. That’s why it’s so important that you focus more on home security during the pandemic than ever before. Here are five important suggestions that will help keep you and your family safe:
Always Lock Your Doors
This is the most obvious home security tip, but it’s also the one that is most frequently ignored. Even if you live in a relatively safe area, leaving your doors (and windows) unlocked creates unnecessary risk. Breaking a window or knocking down a door requires skill and determination on the part of the thieves. This means that only hardcore criminals are likely to attempt it, and there are probably not too many of them around. Walking through an unlocked door, on the other hand, is so easy that anyone could do. Petty criminals or even neighborhood kids might notice that you leave your doors unlocked and decide to take advantage. Locking your doors is simple and easy, so why not make it a habit?
Invest in an Alarm System
An alarm system is a crucial investment if you really want to keep your home safe. Not only will they thwart thieves or intruders in the act, but they’ll also serve as a meaningful deterrent to anyone eyeing your home. People who would otherwise consider breaking into your home will think twice if they notice you’ve got an alarm.
Hide the System’s Wires
Once you’ve got your alarm system in place, it’s always best to hide the wires. When wires are easy to spot, they’re also easy to cut. This means even inexperienced intruders will be able to deactivate your system and enter your home. Shrubs and garlands are handy for hiding wires without ruining your home’s exterior aesthetic.
Change Locks If You Lose a Key
Any time you lose a key, you should assume that it’s fallen into the wrong hands. Sure, it’s likely that it was left to rust on the side of the road or picked up by a harmless, well-meaning individual, but it’s also possible that a potential thief got their hands on it. Changing your locks is cheap and easy, so it makes sense to be cautious.
Don’t Be Lazy In Hiding Spare Keys
Leaving a spare key outside for when you’re in a pinch is not necessarily a “no-no,” but you need to exercise every possible precaution. Leaving the key hidden in an obvious spot right beside the front door is asking for trouble. You need to choose a place away from the door. To be especially safe, burying the key is a good idea.