5 Ways to Improve Your Home Security

Good security starts at home. If you're serious about safeguarding your property from thieves and opportunists, here are just five ways to prevent break-ins by improving safety measures around the house.

1. Invest in an alarm system.

In the 21st century, home security systems have moved beyond simple alarms. They now come with everything from wireless sensors to digitally accessed touchscreens, so depending on the level of security that you're hoping for, you can lock up your property tighter than a military base. If you have a lot of valuables in your home, or if you'd like to protect your children with the same vigor that others protect their jewels, consider a high-tech alarm system.

2. Watch the second story.

Many homeowners don't even think about securing the windows and balconies on their upper levels, but enterprising thieves only need a grappling hook and a little courage to gain access from above. Protect your home on all levels by making sure that every door and window is secured before you retire at night.

3. Light up your life.

Strong exterior lighting will leave thieves with nowhere to hide, especially if you illuminate dark areas in corners and around shrubbery. Line your walkways with lanterns or lamp posts; put flood lights on top of the garage; use motion detectors to light up moving figures late at night. You might also consider installing timed interior lights to give the illusion of occupancy even when you aren't home.

4. Secure your glass doors.

Blane David Nordahl, also known as the "Silver Thief," made away with millions of dollars in jewelry and cutlery from wealthy homes. His secret involved the quiet and painstaking removal of glass panes from French doors. You'll need more than a lock to keep the Nordahls of the world at bay: Think about steel bars and unbreakable glass.

5. Connect with an alarm monitoring company.

Home alarm monitoring services don't provide the alarms themselves. Instead, they guard your property from a central service station that will immediately detect any smoke alarms or attempted break-ins, and they'll report these incidents to the authorities if you can't. They'll be the virtual watchdogs of your real estate, so don't be afraid to connect to their network of analysts, monitors and emergency responders.

These are just five ways to improve security around the home. Don't take chances where your family is concerned: Keep everyone safe by making their protection your top priority.

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