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Detroit Security Company's Guide: How to Assess Your Home's Vulnerability

Updated: Jun 21

Keeping your home and family safe is a top priority for any homeowner. While you can find security providers to provide you with reliable security solutions, prevention is key. This guide will help you assess your home's vulnerability to break-ins, so you can take proactive steps to deter criminals and create a safer environment.

Understanding Your Neighbourhood

Before diving into your home's physical security, take a step back and consider your neighbourhood. Knowing your surroundings is crucial. Here's what to consider:

  • Crime Rates

Research crime statistics in your area. Most local police departments or community websites provide this information. Look for trends in break-ins and identify if there are specific times or areas targeted more frequently to know if your home is at risk. 

  • Neighbourhood Watch Programs

Consider joining a neighbourhood watch program or forming one if it doesn't exist. Some law enforcement officials have been having meetings over the last few months to address the recent burglaries in Detroit, so meetings like these may provide some advice that can help you protect your home. These programs foster a sense of community and vigilance, making it more difficult for criminals to operate unnoticed. 

  • Visibility

Are the local streetlights functioning properly? Are there overgrown bushes or trees that could provide hiding spots for criminals? Good lighting and clear sightlines are key to deterring break-ins.

Security personnel can help you assess your weaknesses

Exterior Vulnerability Assessment

Now, let's turn our focus to your property. Walk around the perimeter of your home and take a critical look from a would-be intruder's perspective. Here's what to pay attention to:

  • Doors and Frames

Ensure all doors, including garage doors and basement entrances, are made of sturdy materials like solid wood or metal. Check for any significant gaps or damage around the door frame. These gaps can be easily exploited to pry the door open. 

  • Windows

Similar to doors, windows should be made of strong materials and have functioning locks. Consider installing security bars on basement windows or windows easily accessible from the ground to prevent easy access to those windows. 

  • Entry Points

Look for any secondary entry points that might be overlooked. This could include pet doors, crawl spaces, or infrequently used doors. Secure these areas with appropriate locks or reinforcements. Also, be mindful of access points to your roof – a determined intruder could gain entry through a skylight or poorly secured hatch.

  • Fencing

If you have a fence, ensure it's about 2 metres tall and in good condition. Treat your wooden frences to prevent rot, and ensure metal fences have no large gaps or loose panels that could permit entry. 

  • Landscaping

Trim bushes and trees away from windows and doors to eliminate hiding spots for criminals. Consider planting thorny shrubs or hedges near vulnerable entry points as a natural deterrent. 

Ask your security provider for advice regarding your security measures

Security Hardware Upgrades

Once you've identified potential weaknesses, here are some security hardware upgrades to consider:

  • Deadbolt Locks

Install high-quality deadbolt locks with at least a one-inch throw on all exterior doors. These locks are significantly more difficult to bypass than standard locks.

  • Door Reinforcements

Strengthen door jambs with strike plates on both sides of the door frame where the deadbolt meets the frame. Additionally, consider installing security hinges that prevent the door from being pried open.

  • Window Locks and Security Bars

Install high-quality locks on all windows and consider adding security bars to basement windows or those easily accessible from the ground. 

  • Window Film

Apply a layer of security film to windows. This film makes it more difficult to break the glass and gain entry.

  • Motion Sensor Lights

Install motion sensor lights around the perimeter of your home. These lights will illuminate the area when someone approaches, deterring criminals and improving visibility for you. 

Creating a Secure Interior

While securing your home's exterior is crucial, the interior also needs attention:

  • Visibility Through Windows

Avoid keeping valuables on display near windows, as this can tempt potential intruders. 

  • Secure Valuables

Store valuables such as jewellery, cash, and important documents in a secure safe bolted to the floor or wall.

  • Alarms and Monitoring Systems

Consider installing a monitored security alarm system. These systems provide 24/7 protection and can deter break-ins before they even occur. Many systems offer features like remote monitoring and smart home integration, allowing you to check on your home and control lights even when you're away.

  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

While not directly related to break-ins, ensure you have properly functioning smoke and carbon monoxide detectors installed on every floor of your home. 

Additional Security Measures

Here are some additional security measures to consider:

  • Door and Window Alarms

Install audible alarms on doors and windows to deter break-ins and alert you or your neighbours of a potential intrusion.

  • Security Cameras

Visible security cameras can be a deterrent, especially if they are connected to a recording system. However, ensure proper signage is displayed to inform visitors they are being recorded.

  • Beware of Social Media

Be mindful of what you share on social media, especially regarding upcoming vacations or absences from home. The recent string of burglaries in Detroit have targeted people who are away from home, so one of the easiest ways you can protect yourself is to refrain from announcing your absence online. This information can be valuable to potential criminals.

  • Get to Know Your Neighbours

Building positive relationships with your neighbours fosters a sense of community and can be a valuable asset. Neighbours can keep an eye on your property when you're away and vice versa. Consider exchanging contact information and letting them know when you'll be away for extended periods.

  • Create an Illusion of Occupancy

Use timers on lights and radios to create the illusion that someone is home even when you're away. Consider leaving blinds or curtains partially open during the day to further this illusion.

  • Maintain a Secure Mailbox

A overflowing mailbox is a telltale sign that you're away. Empty your mailbox regularly, or consider requesting mail hold services when you're away for extended periods.

  • Be Wary of Unsolicited Visitors

Never open the door to strangers. If someone you don't know comes to your door, use a peephole or speak through the door without opening it. If they are persistent or seem suspicious, contact the police.

  • Secure Your Garage

Don't underestimate the importance of securing your garage. Install a deadbolt lock on the garage door leading into the house and ensure the door to the outside is secure. Store tools and equipment securely within the garage, as these items can be used to break into your home.

Working with a Security Professional

After your assessment, it’s prudent to consider contacting a security service to beef up your home defence. A professional security provider can conduct their own vulnerability assessment of your home and recommend concrete security measures. They can also help you select and install a security system and advise you on best practices for home security.

With these tips and a comprehensive assessment of your home's security, you can significantly reduce the risk of a break-in. However, always remember that security is an ongoing process. By staying vigilant and taking proactive steps, you can continually make sure your home remains safe and secure environment for your family and belongings.

When you need a reliable security company to help you look after your home, Detroit Security Company is here to help. Our personnel are carefully chosen and trained to the highest standard to ensure your property receives high-quality protection. Give us a call now at (313) 241-0901 to give your home a little extra protection. 

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