Monday, Jan 30, 2017 | Tracy Hendrix

Secure Your Home for the Spring

Now that the holidays are over, many people feel like the most dangerous time of the year for home break-ins is over, and they can rest easy again. While it certainly is true that your home could become a prime target during the holidays, criminal activity – unfortunately – can happen at any other time of year as well. That is why it’s so important to stay on top of your home security, no matter what month it is. As the new season rolls around and you’re getting to your spring cleaning, consider updating your security practices as well.

Light up the Dark Corners

One of the most important things you can do to keep your home safe is to make sure that you’ve got strong exterior lighting. Thieves don’t want to be seen, so putting up floodlights or other large light sources will make your home less likely to become a target in the middle of the night. If you’re concerned about the energy bill or the bright lights keep you from sleeping at night, consider getting motion-activated lights that only come on when something moves past a sensor.

Prep Your Plants

Sometimes the plants in your yard can be a hindrance to your home security, and other times they can be an asset. If you’ve got a lot of wild and brushy foliage in any part of your yard, consider taming it — this is a great time to cut back trees, because many haven’t gotten their new leaves yet. This will make your yard more open and provide fewer places for thieves to hide. On the other hand, bushes or trees with thorns are great for planting underneath windows, because they help to discourage anyone who might want to climb through.

Lock up Your Things

Obviously, we know that we should keep our valuable outdoor toys like bikes and boats under lock and key. But you may not have thought about some of your other belongings. If you have a lot of tools lying around, for example, those should be secured for two reasons: One, they’re valuable in their own right, and if they’re just lying around they’re easy to steal; and two, they can give thieves everything they need to gain entry into your home. Also, regarding the things inside your house, be careful with how you secure important items. Many people like to keep personal documents like birth certificates in a home safe. If you do this, make sure that your safe is bolted to the floor, rather than one of the small portable lock boxes. If your safe can be picked up, a thief will just take the whole thing and open it up later when he’s not pressed for time. Finally, don’t leave anything valuable where it can be easily seen through a window.

Of course, these tips don’t only work for the Spring, they’re also good practice year round. What’s most important to take away from this exchange is the importance of a constant mind for security. Don’t let the changing of the seasons distract you from your ongoing efforts to protect your home and your assets. Remember all year long, active prevention is the best solution to help deter criminal activity in and around your home.

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