With the holidays upon us, the bad guys are always looking for ways to take advantage of vacationers, unattended packages, and the chaos of your neverending holiday errands. While you need to be observant all year, the holiday season tends to bring more relaxed attitudes towards security. Here’s a home security checklist for the holidays to make sure your family can relax and enjoy the most wonderful time of the year.
– No Hidden Keys Under the Doormat
Thieves are well aware that keys are hidden in the usual places, such as above the door frame, under a planter, or even worse, under the welcome mat. It’s recommended never to store spare keys outside, but if you must, store them far away from the door in an inconspicuous place.
– Secure Gates, Sheds, and Outdoor Accessories
You may not be thinking of your outdoor grill or lawn mower, but thieves are. Make sure you have moved all outdoor tools and accessories into a locked shed, if available, or secure them with a bicycle lock against an immovable object. Gates and sheds should always have locks; try combination locks if you don’t want to carry extra keys.
– Light Up Every Corner of Your Yard
Flood lights make your yard uninviting to thieves looking to sneak around under the cover of darkness. Motion sensor flood lights are ideal, as the surprise of a bright light will discourage thieves from continuing their actions. Additionally, make sure your sidewalks, doorways, and windows are brightly lit so you can see visitors as they approach your home.
– Garage Security
If you have an interior connecting door from the garage to your home, make sure it is securely locked at all times. Lock your overhead garage door, all the time, every time. You may consider boosting your overhead garage door’s security with a manual lock. This may seem inconvenient, but it is an additional physical barrier for would-be thieves.
– Don’t Leave Package Deliveries Visible
Porch pirates don’t just cruise neighborhoods looking for unattended packages; they will follow delivery trucks and steal packages as soon as they are delivered. Having a security camera installed may be a good way to prove your packages were stolen, but since many thieves are commuting into your neighborhood from further away to avoid identification, these cameras won’t help you identify them or get your packages back. Instead of shipping to your home, have the packages shipped to a neighbor, family member, or friend who is usually home when you’re not.
– Door and Window Security
In addition to keeping your doors and window spaces brightly lit, make sure they are covered by security cameras. All windows and doors should be locked every time you leave the house, even if you are just “running down the street for a minute.” Consider a keyless lock system on your doors to avoid carrying keychains around. If you have a sliding door, secure it by locking it and placing a wedge in the track.
– Don’t Display Your Purchases
If you buy a big ticket item, such as a TV or gaming system, break down the packaging and destroy it to avoid advertising your new purchase to curious thieves.
– Arm the Alarm, Whether You’re Home or Not
Smart technologies such as Honeywell’s Total Connect Security System allow you to arm and disarm the alarm system via mobile device from any location. Get the most of your alarm by connecting with an alarm monitoring service to ensure law enforcement, fire, or medical is dispatched to your home when it’s triggered.
Call the Professionals to Make Sure Your Home Security Checklist is Complete
Next Generation Security Concepts has all the tools you need to secure your home for the holidays and beyond. We also offer free security assessments to identify any gaps in your home security. Contact us now for your free assessment.