At Lockly, we know home security — look no further than our awards from sources like the Wall Street Journal, Digital Trends, CES and the Consumer Technology Association. We also know that home security practices are on a spectrum, and the most effective tips for home security run the gamut, from low-tech common sense methods to cutting-edge smart home gadgets. Covering your bases with a bit from both categories is your best bet for keeping your home and family safe, and your stress levels low.
1. Cover the Basics
It may sound obvious to say “lock your doors and windows,” but the simple stuff matters — at the end of the day, it’s obvious for good reason. Oftentimes, all it takes to attract a burglar is spotting an unlocked window; and conversely, all it takes to deter a burglar is finding a locked door when they jiggle the handle.
Like Consumer Affairs says, 34% of burglars break in through the front door. Tools like the Lockly Vision and Lockly Flex Touch don’t just offer heavy-duty locks, they alert you when the door’s open. So you’ll know if you’re at risk, or if dad’s checking the porch for that Amazon package for the third time today. Plus, the Auto Locking feature allows you to customize user access and lock the door even after you’ve left your house, in case you forget.
2. Bolster Your Windows
When it comes to windows, don’t settle for just latches. Not only are some latches severely dated, many can be broken with simple blunt force. The good news is you can choose from a huge variety of methods to beef up your home’s overall window security, including impact-resistant glass or security film, window bars, simple hedge cover, pin locks, windows sensors or — our personal favorite — an affordable Lockly Window Alarm.
3. Don’t Show Off
Look, we know you’re super proud of that new electric lawn mower and you love those bragging rights from owning an e-bike, but don’t treat your garage like a showroom. Likewise, maybe don’t put that jewelry you inherited right by the window, do collect packages from the porch as quickly as possible and consider accenting that 75-inch OLED TV with some nice privacy blinds while you’re at it. Keeping your valuables reasonably out of sight is an easy home security tip that helps keep temptation from the bad guys at a minimum.
4. Light Up Your Life
In a 2018 randomized study, public safety experts found that outdoor lighting cut crime by about 39%. That makes exterior lighting one of the biggest bangs for your buck, in terms of home security tips. LED floodlights, motion sensors, solar-charged lights, decorative lights and even good old street lights can illuminate any potential shenanigans. Plus, they just make your yard feel cozy.
5. Level Up Your Locks
Old door locks are attractive bait for break-ins, so invest in strong deadbolts on all exterior doors, at a minimum. An even better tip for home security: upgrade to smart locks. Lockly’s Vision and Secure lineups, for instance, offer industry-leading features like security cameras, hack-proof keypads, 3D fingerprint sensors, auto-locking, motion sensors, two-way audio communication and lots more — you won’t find any of those features on a regular door lock.
According to Frontier, 57% of smart security users report that their devices save them time, 45% say that smart security saves them money and 72% say that smart tech simply makes them feel safer. And that feeling doesn’t have a price tag.
6. Check Your Weak Points
Now that you’ve got the basics covered, don’t neglect the often-overlooked weak points that thieves love to target. An unlocked garage door is a common vulnerability, but we can go even deeper. If you use a window unit air conditioner, lock it down with window locks or corner braces to prevent entry (or theft of the AC itself). Always use in-track security bars or pin locks to secure sliding glass doors. And if you have a shed, make sure the screws on the door are of the tamper-proof variety, as some thieves will go as far as simply unscrewing the door otherwise, and we know you just bought that weed eater.
7. Show Off Your Signs
Lots of our Security Kit packages include a “Protected by Lockly” sign, or you can pick one up on its own. We offer that sign not just because we’re proud of our products (which we are), but because the simple act of putting up a sign offers some real protection. In fact, incarcerated burglars say that security signs are one of the things they consider most when casing a home. We think that Lockly sign looks great next to the garden gnome, too.
8. Let Lockly Help
According to CNET, a home with a security system is roughly three times less likely to be broken into than a home without one. With a Wi-Fi-connected Lockly smart home security system, you can add features like mobile app controls, real-time audio and video monitoring and eKeys for guests and service providers. Features like these don’t just protect your home, your family and all the most valuable things in your life, they help make life a little easier, too. Because when you can let the cat sitter in with a few swipes of your phone from 2,000 miles away or know that you’ll never have to fumble with keys in the dark ever again, that’s not just smart security — it’s just plain smart. To turn these tips for home security into action, reach out to Lockly today.
Dan Ketchum is a freelance writer and small business owner with 13 years of experience. He’s been fortunate enough to collaborate with publishers and brands such as Fortune, Toshiba, Samsung, The Seattle Times, The Motley Fool and more along the way.