DIY Friday: 3 Easy DIY Tips to Improve Home Security

by Kyle Taylor on January 24, 2013

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Security CameraThere are a number of do-it-yourself projects that can help improve the overall security of your home. Most of them only require some elbow grease and a little determination.

But before you get started, remember that it’s always best to enlist the help of a reputable home security provider to help safeguard your home. Many of today’s home security companies (check out for an example) can offer you 24-hour comprehensive monitored protection for a pretty reasonable price.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at what you can do to improve the general security of your home:

Hide valuables in unassuming places

Many thieves are smarter than you think. If one manages to break into your house, the first thing they will do is look for valuables in the most obvious places, like jewelry boxes, dresser drawers, closets and nightstands in the master bedroom. Consequently, you should hide prized possessions in more inconspicuous locations.

While the best bet would be a high-quality, bolted-down safe, there are many other effective ways to stow away valuables. Many people actually hide them in plain sight using book safes, hollow soda cans and cereal boxes. If you have the time, you can also construct a hidden wall compartment. Although this requires some knowledge in construction, these compartments can be an extremely effective secret hideaway spot.

Replace old and broken locks

A broken lock can serve as an open invitation for burglars looking for an easy score. It tells criminals that the homeowner is not overly concerned with home security. Remember, thieves target homes that are easy to break into, get what they want and get out. Rusted or obsolete locks, which can be easily bypassed by a resourceful intruder, best allow them to accomplish that.

If any locks on your property are in disrepair, consider replacing them with Grade 1 deadbolts. Grade 1 locks earn that designation from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), so you can be sure that you’re investing in a high-quality lock. For extra peace of mind, consider investing in a deadbolt with key control, which allows you to control who makes copies of your keys.

Use your yard as a deterrent

Believe it or not, your yard plays a significant role in home security. Tall hedges, privacy fences and inadequate lighting can all help burglars conceal themselves during a break-in attempt. To help thwart their efforts, make sure to trim hedges to a height of three feet or less. Additionally, it’s advisable to install motion-activated floodlights – which cost around $20-$30 at your local hardware store – around your property.

If you want to take it a step further, install noise-making pea gravel around doors and windows. This gravel will make a distinct crunching noise when stepped on, which will help alert both you and your neighbors of an unwanted presence.

**Photo by JermJus on Flickr**

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