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| Home and Garden

03/02/14

Security reach: How much is too much when it comes to home security?

Safety first is a mantra that plenty of people take with them, be it at work or play.
If your job demands you pay close attention to slips, trips, falls or something more serious, you're always implementing a questioning attitude as far as risk versus reward.
What about that upcoming company softball game or shooting hoops in the driveway? Certainly, you think long and hard about potential injuries and how that affects your future.
Often overlooked while you're determining a best decision with the aforementioned examples is how to take that same mentality and apply it to your home.
Is your home really as safe as it could be?

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The average burglary costs a home owner around $2,000 and occurs every 15 seconds, not exactly the kind of information you want to hear, especially if you haven't done much to protect yourself from burglars.
Most home owners and those who rent apartments or townhouses purchase insurance to cover their belongings and leave it at that. The monthly paid premium is better than nothing at all, but hardly looks deeper into ways to protect your home beyond losing a section of aluminum side due to high winds or a few missing shingles thanks to snow.
Jarrett Arthur is an expert in self defense and education for women, moms and kids particularly and is quick to point out that self defense goes beyond learning to physically protect yourself. It can pertain to keeping your home safe as well.
Arthur suggests that safety starts with the simple tips, such as keeping windows closed or equipping exterior doors with deadbolts. The latter makes it harder for burglars to muscle the door open or swipe a credit card through a traditional lock.
Beyond the obvious, Arthur urges home owners to think beyond doors and windows.
She's quick to point out ideas that center on letting would be intruders think there is a dog in the house by posting "Beware of Dog" signs, in addition to always sleeping with a phone nearby.
Along with your phone, you might want to think about stashing your keys in your nightstand drawer, too. That isn't suggesting that you'll fight off burglars with the keys to your Ford Focus, but rather being close to that alarm button on your car.
Pressing that if you think someone is attempting to break into your home easily causes a scene, wakes the neighbors with the flashing lights and noises and could startle the burglar enough to send them running in the other direction.
You'd also be wise to lay off the social media posts if you plan on leaving home for a few days or weeks on a vacation, for example. Plenty of the more savvy burglars pay attention to men and women who can't help themselves by putting a message on Facebook that reads "Headed to the beach for two weeks."
Burglars and criminals are mindful of perusing the social media sites and pinpointing homes they know will be vacant. It's always best to exercise better judgment and keep your travel plans to yourself or between close friends and family.
Your home is a valuable asset but more than that, your safety is paramount. Having a television or tablet stolen means little in the grand scheme of protecting your home. Those items can be replaced thanks to your insurance.
Keeping you and your family out of harms ranks as safety priority number one.

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