A complete home safety checklist from the home security experts at Yale
The start of the year often means making plans. From new exercise regimes to home improvement tasks, there are an array of lists and goals we make in the new year to improve our lives.
But something that’s often missed off that list is home security. Upgrading your home security at this time of year is a great way of prepping your property throughout the winter months, when burglars can utilise the dark, dull weather to skulk around the area undetected.
So, how will you be making the necessary upgrades to your home security this new year? Well, to give you a helping hand, our home security experts have shared their advice to create a home safety checklist to ensure your home and garden is secure and safe throughout 2022.
Step 1 - Start from the outside in:
Spending time in the garden is probably a dim and distant memory for us Brits at the moment. But your outdoor security is vitally important in protecting your home - think of it as the first line of defence in securing your property.
We’d recommend taking a walk around the perimeter of your property to understand the condition of any home security measures that you have outdoors. Outbuildings, sheds and garages need to be protected as these can hold thousands of pounds worth of valuable outdoor equipment, tools and machinery, so require a high level of protection.
- Let’s start with fence panels. We’d recommend checking that all fence panels are securely in place, as loose or broken fencing can offer easy access to your garden. We would recommend fixing any of these broken panels immediately.
- When it comes to the perimeter of your property, it’s also important that trees and bushes offer an added level of protection to your garden. Are there any low hanging branches that can be cut or removed to prevent people climbing over the fence? Hawthorn bushes are also a great addition to the garden too to prevent opportunists from vying for your home.
- Gates also offer easy access to your garden, so you need to double check that these are secure. Make sure the gate itself looks up to scratch, as a broken or flimsy one can signal to thieves that you don’t take your home security seriously. Investing in a high-quality, weatherproof padlock, including our Maximum Security Weatherproof Padlock, will ensure that your gate is secured, but also protect it against the harsh winter weather and from thieves trying to break in.
- And remember, opportunists will use any tools or garden equipment lying around to try and gain access to your home. Make sure these are protected in a garden shed or are secured in your garage to ensure your own belongings can’t be used against you.
- Sheds are a great investment to allow you to protect any outdoor items including garden furniture, lawnmowers and gardening equipment. Upgrade your shed security with a maximum-security padlock and take it to the next level with the addition of our Wireless Shed and Garage Alarm which will alert you immediately to any motion detected.
- Our Sync Smart Home Alarm is a great investment too if you already have multiple sheds or outbuildings as this model has 200m detection range. This means anything chosen to be monitored within the perimeter will be covered by the alarm system.
- Bicycles should also be securely locked away in your shed or outbuilding, as these are often a key target for opportunists for an easy sell on. We would recommend investing a maximum security bike lock, such as our Maximum Security Bike Lock, to keep this expensive bit of kit protected.
- If large outdoor furniture must remain in place throughout the winter, we would also ensure that it is fully covered and attached securely to the ground.
- If you have a larger outdoor space, an outdoor security camera or CCTV kit, such as our Outdoor Pro Wi-Fi Camera, will allow you to monitor your garden from anywhere at any time with your smartphone. With spotlights, siren alarms and a two-way audio system, you have all the protection you need to ensure your outdoor security is up to scratch this winter and beyond.
- And don’t forget your front garden. The front door is still the most popular form of entry into the home, so it’s essential you look to the front of the home to provide a good first line of defence. Make sure wheelie bins are positioned away from any flat rooves or next to windowsills as these make for easy steps into your property if positioned near to your home.
Step 2 - Upgrade your door security
If you’re only looking to make one home security update to your home this season, we’d recommend upgrading your door security. Even though your front door may work perfectly, it might not be as secure as it should be. So, what should you be looking out for?
- Do all your doors close properly? Or do you need to lift up the handle strongly to close it securely? If so, it’s time to purchase a new door that serves its purpose as a loose, floppy door handle can easily communicate to thieves that your home security isn’t up to scratch.
- So, let’s start at the basics. Once you have a good, sturdy door handle in place, you’ll need to focus on the door hardware. Lock snapping is a particular tactic burglars use to break in to properties, so your door will require a high-quality cylinder to ensure the ultimate protection against these types of attacks. You can easily check your cylinder using a £1 coin - take a look at your door and spot your cylinder. Does it exceed the diameter of your £1 coin? If so, it’s time to get it replaced. We’d always recommend a 3-Star Cylinder, such as our popular Platinum 3-Star Cylinder, as this is anti-bump, anti-snap, anti-pick, anti-screw and anti-drill, and therefore protects you from all forms or attack.
- If you’re needing to replace your door lock, you could also opt for a smarter upgrade - a smart door lock. Smart door locks are a convenient alternative to a traditional door lock, allowing you to access your home using your smartphone or other compatible accessories. Our Conexis L1 and Keyless Connected Smart Door Locks are suitable for both composite, UPVC and wooden doors respectively, so there’s always going to be an option to best suit your needs. With a variety of colours and finishes, you can even ensure you’re not only up to scratch with your home security, but also hitting the mark in the style stakes too.
- Conservatory, back and side doors are all particularly common entry points for thieves, so you should consider upgrading your door security in this area. Installing a bolt or chain is great for added security, such as our Door Security Bolt.
- To really showcase to criminals that you take your home security seriously, we would recommend installing a smart outdoor security system, allowing you to monitor who’s coming or going. Our All-In-One Camera is a great option, allowing you to talk to visitors, welcomed or not, on your doorstep with its two-way talk functionality via your smartphone.
Step 3 - Head indoors
After the perimeter of your home has been secured, you’ll need to move to the inside of your home. This is to ensure you have all the necessary home security measures in place to keep your home, family and belongings safe.
You’ll firstly need to access your windows, interior doors and what you’re signalling to opportunists from the outside. Can they see expensive TV’s, computers or electronics? If so, it might be worth considering alternative spaces for your high price valuables.
But there are other ways in which you can protect your home from the inside:
- Firstly, let’s take a look at the windows. Although we often open windows to let light and fresh air in throughout the day, an open window is just easy pickings for burglars. They could be in and out of your home with your prized possessions in seconds. So ensure you keep windows locked at all times - particularly at night.
- Statistics from the Eco Experts highlighted that burglaries most likely take place between 6pm and 6am. So, it’s vital that you consider high-quality home alarm systems as these will deter unwanted individuals, and ultimately alert you to break-ins whilst you’re asleep or out via your smartphone.
- For convenience and security, home alarm systems, including smart alarms, like our Sync Smart Home Alarm, are simple to set up and control. With no wires, the easy installation means your alarm can be easily configured via an app, allowing you to arm and disarm your home from anywhere at any time with just the tap of a button. You can seamlessly link your alarm to other smart devices such as voice assistants as well as additional accessories, including smoke and water leak sensors, smart plugs, and pet-friendly motion detectors. This all-around system will fully arm your home for the ultimate protection.
- And you can also look to keep an eye on exactly what’s going on inside your home by investing in an indoor security camera. There are a range of options available that allow you to easily plug and play to get live viewing footage of inside your home all via your smartphone. With our Indoor Wi-Fi Pan & Tilt Camera, you can live stream inside your home from anywhere, so you can position the cameras to always keep an eye on key areas of the home. Whether that’s your entrance space, back door or simply as a camera to check in on your pets whilst you’re out, there are an array of functionalities that make our indoor security camera range a handy addition to your home security measures.
So, with an array of tips to improve your home security for this year, how will you be making the necessary upgrades to ensure your property has the best protection around? Remember, there are a variety of simple changes you can make to improve the security of your home and garden, so make these small updates to make big, positive changes to your home security.
To browse our full range of home security and smart security solutions, browse the ranges across our website here.