How to protect your home from burglars

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How to protect your home from burglars

How can you protect your home from burglars aside from getting a burglar alarm system and possibly a guard dog?

Well there are a number of ways to ensure that your home will not be a burglars next target.

Following these simple steps will give you peace of mind every time you leave your house and/or go to bed.

Follow our guide:

1. Check all windows and doors have fully functioning locks.

Front Door:
5 Lever Mortice lock (click to view on Amazon)

ERA Fortress British Standard 3621 5 Lever Maximum Security Sashlocks are recommended for External timber and composite doors. The BS 3621 standard is recognised as giving the maximum protection for home and commercial use, approved by Insurance companies and the Police. The laminated steel Deadbolt helps to prevent hacksaw attacks. The Deadbolt has a 20mm throw for greater security. Hardened steel plates on the casing prevent drill attacks. The 5 Lever mechanism is designed to prevent lock picking. The Latchbolt can be easily reversed for left or right handed doors. ERA Fortress Sashlocks are ideal for use in new doors or upgrading security from 2 and 3 lever door locks. Sashlocks are for use with door handles. The lock is operated from either side of the via a key. ERA Locks have been providing high quality home and business security products for over 150 years. ERA is one of the UK’s most recognised Lock brands providing you with the peace of mind that your property and possesions are locked up safe and sound. ERA Locks are approved by Insurance companies. The extensive range of products includes, Nightlatches, Mortice Locks, Window Locks, Cylinders, UPVC and Composite door locks, Digital Door Locks & Wordlock Padlocks.  Click here for prices.

Maximum security Night Latch (click to view on Amazon)

Yale’s maximum security BS1 nightlatches are British Standard approved to ensure the highest level of security for timber external doors. They are Kitemarked to BS 3621:2007 and are recommended by insurance companies. These security nightlatches have been approved by the Police “Secured by Design” initiative. The Yale lock is key-operated from the outside and both key- and lever-handle-operated from the inside with the internal handle being lockable for increased security. The latch automatically deadlocks on closing the door and the snib function enables the latch to be held back. The lock uses a 6-pin high performance cylinder, and has a 20 mm bolt which is anti-carding. It also has a 15 year guarantee. The BS1 night latches have a 60 mm backset–this is the measurement from the edge of the door to the centre of the keyhole. Locks with a 40 mm backset are normally used where there is restricted space, such as on a glass panelled door. This Yale PBS1CH has a hardened case and cylinder both finished in polished chrome. It comes supplied with two keys and has a maximum security rating.  Click here for prices.

Back Doors
UPVC Patio or French doors:
  • Install a multi-point locking system if the doors do not have this already.
  • Install a top and bottom lock or a central rail key operated lock.
Wooden Patio or french doors:
  • Install a top and bottom lock or a central rail key operated lock.
  • When installing a lock to a wooden door, it should be fitted 90 degrees to the grain of the wood to avoid splitting if subjected to pressure.
Windows:
  • All windows should be fitted with key operated locks particularly those windows at ground or basement level.
Garage:
  • Install a garage Lock for the front of the garage door.  This also gives a good visual deterrent.

Garage Defender (click to view on Amazon)

 

 

Having had this exact model in the past when we owned a garage, it was tested to the limit when someone tried to force open the door.  The intruder did not succeed in getting in but we did have to repair the door after it was bent out of shape slightly at the top.  This lock is drilled fixed to the floor at the front of the garage.  This is a must if you have a garage.

3. Install a visual Burglar Alarm (click to view on Amazon)

Yale HSA6200 Wireless Alarm Kit:
No matter how well your property is secured with locks, an alarm system will add peace of mind and an additional level of protection to your home. Many people are put off by the high cost of some alarm systems, and the mess associated with installation. Yale, the brand leader in home security has introduced this cost-effective home security alarm, which offers a complete alarm solution for your home, and external buildings such as garages and sheds. The Standard Alarm is a basic keypad operated system ideal for a flat, terraced, or semi-detached home. The keypad enables you to set or unset the alarm via an access code. The system is pre-set with a 20 second exit/entry period and will allow the entire property to be either armed or disarmed.  Click here for prices.
Yale Smart Home Alarm Kit:

The Yale Smart Home Alarm Kit is a home alarm system built with you in mind. Control your Yale home alarm system via the Yale Home app, putting you firmly in control anytime, anywhere.
You can now arm, disarm and view the status of your alarm via your smartphone, so there’s no need to worry if you forget to set your alarm.
For the ultimate peace of mind, The Yale Home app will notify you if any changes are made to your system, or if the alarm sounds when activity is detected. When using a PIR Image Camera, you can also view activity inside your home to make sure everything is just as you left it.  To upgrade your Smart Home Alarm into a full Yale smart security system you can add new security devices to the Yale Home app, such as Smart Door Locks, CCTV and Home View cameras, there’s even the option to operate home appliances remotely using the Yale Power Switch.  Once connected the Yale Home app provides quick links to other Yale apps, including the CCTV and the Home View camera app, to check what is happening at home when you’re away. The app also gives you the option to unlock your door to friends and family, by simply fitting a Yale module to your smart door lock.  Click here for prices.

4. Invest in a Ring or Nest Doorbell

This type of device is now commonly use to deter burglars.  Burglars will see if you are in before they try to burgle your house, usually a few days or weeks before.  You can store or download images of people you do not recognise and if you are burgled, you can always give them to the Police.

Nest Doorbell (click to view prices)

Image of a Nest Doorbell

Nest Hello Video Doorbell lets you know who’s at the door, so you won’t miss a visitor or parcel delivery. It can send an alert to your smart device, and can tell the difference between a person and something else. It gives you the full view with crystal clarity so you can see the person from head to toe, right down to the doorstep so you can see parcels left for you too, and you can speak to your visitor via the Nest app (iOS & Android). With an optional Nest Aware subscription it can tell the difference between people you know and a stranger, and it live-streams 24/7 so you can always check what’s happening at your door.

Ring Doorbell (click to view on Amazon)

  • Works with selected Alexa devices to launch real-time video with your voice.
  • Lets you see, hear and speak to visitors from your phone, tablet and PC.
  • You’ll get a notification when movement is detected or when visitors press the Doorbell.
  • Works on any home, with or without existing doorbell wires.
  • Monitors your home in HD video with infrared night vision.
  • Lets you check-in on your property at anytime with Live View, real-time video.
  • Includes Theft Protection: if your doorbell gets stolen, we’ll replace it for free.

5. Install a Nest Outdoor Camera (click to view prices)

Image of a Nest Outdoor CameraWith top-notch visual clarity, processing power and connectivity, Nest Cam IQ Outdoor is a premium way to make sure that your home’s surrounding areas are safe.  It’s weather-proof, temper-proof, and is able to detect a person up to 15 metres away, so it can help you find out about a break-in before it happens.  It enables you to check in on your phone, even when you are out, and is clever enough to distinguish between a person and a thing. Super sight vision monitors and records the action with superb clarity, and it can zoom in and follow the action for you.  A powerful speaker allows you to communicate through it using the Nest app, and, with a Nest Aware subscription (sold separately), it can send you familiar face alerts.

6. Install good outside lighting (click to view on Amazon)

Motion sensor halogen outdoor security lights (pack of 2):

Deter intruders with the Smartwares ES120/2 Security Light. The double floodlights with motion detector turn on automatically when someone approaches. The halogen bulbs are replaceable and the sensor can be set to your own preferences. The floodlights produces a bright light as soon as someone enters the detection area. With an IP44 protection rating this light is suitable for outdoor use.  The replaceable halogen bulbs are 120 W and produce 2250 lumens, this can be compared with the light output of an incandescent light bulb with approximately 200 W. The light has a colour temperature of 2900 K, which gives a warm white light.  You can set the light so it shines for a long duration in order to deter intruders or set it to shine for a short duration so your doorway is illuminated. By adjusting the 2 dials you can set the daylight sensitivity and the lighting duration from 10 seconds to 10 minutes. This way you can set the light exactly to your own preferences.  Measures 185 x 310 mm.  On the Smartwares ES120/2 Security Light you receive 24 months warranty.  Click here for prices.

This stylish, wall mounted, up/down outdoor light has a stunning, modern stainless steel flush cylinder design and is ideal for lighting gardens, paths, garages, patios, courtyards, decorative porches and driveways. As well as being IP44 outdoor weatherproof rated, this external light also features a practical integrated PIR motion detector – providing extra security for the home and giving peace of mind. The wall-mounted outdoor flush light comes in a sturdy and weatherproof durable stainless steel design and emits bright light from both the top and bottom. This robust, illuminating external light is IP44 Rated and is fully certified for outdoor installation.  Click here for prices.

The Smartwares RX1010-38R-S Wall light gives your façade, fence or wall a sleek modern look. The light with motion sensor makes sure the light only turns on when necessary. The IP44 protection rating allows you to use the wall light outdoor.  You can set the light so it shines for a long or short duration in order to deter intruders or so as you can always find your keyhole when returning home in the dark. By adjusting the 3 dials you can set the sensitivity of the 115° sensor to a maximum of 9 metres, the lighting duration from 5 seconds to 8 minutes and the daylight sensitivity from 10 to 20,000 lux. This way you can set the light exactly to your own preferences. The light does not include a light bulb and is equipped with an E27 fitting that is suitable for light bulbs up to 20 W.  This way you can choose the light intensity and temperature yourself by using the light bulb with the spec you prefer in the fitting. The outdoor light comes with an instruction manual and mounting materials and has an IP44 protection rating which means it is weatherproof.  Measures: 395 x 75 x 125 mm and comes with 24 months warranty.  Click here for prices.

7. Purchase a Security Timer Light Switch (click to view on Amazon)

Incredibly easy to set up and use timer sockets which is why they have a 4 star reviews.  Compact, economic, energy saving and can help to deter intruders. These are adjustable for 24 hours with 15 minute minimum intervals and are also approved to BS1363.  These sockets are CE Approved with a rating of 13A, 3200W.  The beauty of these is that they can be used multiple times a day.

Control electronics from anywhere using your tablet or smartphone with the TP-Link smart Wi-Fi plug. You can turn devices on/off, check status, create schedules and set timers using the Kasa app. Gain peace of mind by checking on your devices remotely and always coming home to a well-lit house. Use away-mode to make it look like you are home when you travel and have lights turn on/off at set times to conserve energy and save on your next bill. Add voice control to any electronic device by pairing with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. With IFTTT, you can also create personalised Applets that trigger automatic actions on your smart plug.

8. Lock Ladders and keep tools out of sight

Ladder Lock (click to view on Amazon)

Universal ladder lock giving a practical system for the safe, convenient and secure storage of most ladders.   Hooks come complete with a locking bar for additional security if a padlock is required.  Two brackets are approximately 225 x 170mm.

Security Tool Box for garage, shed or vehicle (click to view on Amazon)

Heavy duty storage boxes manufactured from sheet steel with powder coated finish.  Ideal for use on site, in vans, workshops, garages and sheds.  Feet with bolt holes for fixing to a solid base to avoid complete removal.  Gas struts and integrated single pin hinge.  Heavy duty lifting handles and the raised feet allow for easier movement by fork lift trucks.  Two cut outs on front for padlock attachment.

9. Place bikes inside the shed or garage

If this is not possible, lock them to an immovable object.

10. Keep side gates locked and fences in good repair 

Side gates
Yale Padlock (click to view on Amazon)

  • Solid multi layered steel body protection system
  • Weatherproof and rust resistant
  • Double bearing lock and hardened boron shackle for additional security

Fences

Scaffold Board Fence
Image of scaffold fence panels
PRHenryBuilder Image

Click here for guidance on what is the best type of fence panels.

Scaffold boards are a heavy duty of way of erecting a fence.  Long lasting and durable, they will not need much maintenance.  You can paint or apply a good quality wood preserver if desired, but the best effect is when left to nature. All that is required is concrete posts to be put in place, then panels can either by slotted in or you could ask your builder to design something shown in the photograph above. Concrete posts cost around £20 each.  You can pick up scaffold boards for approximately £8-13 per board.  You can get scaffold boards from Lawsons, their delivery service is great and they worked with us on a loft extension project.  For this design 80 scaffold board’s and 15 concrete posts were used for a 90ft garden.  We highly recommend them!

11. Keep hedges trimmed around your property (but not too low)

Hedge Cutters (click to view on Amazon)

Burglars like to find a property that is easily accessible with low trimmed hedges that make it easier to jump over.  Keep them trimmed, but not too low.

12. Close and lock all doors and windows before you leave your home, make a mental note to check this every time to you leave

  • Do not leave keys near the front door.
  • Ensure your valuables are not in plain view.
  • Do not draw attention to yourself when you come and go (i.e. don’t shout back at your partner when leaving the house, “see you at the garage in 10 minutes” etc).

13. Purchase an outdoor time lapse camera (click to view on Amazon)

The Brinno TLC200 PRO will record for months on its 4 AA batteries, while saving your Time Lapse Video to the SD Card. No stitching thousands of frames together in post processing. Built with a HDR (High Dynamic Range) image sensor making the creation of high quality time lapse videos a snap, even in low light situations where other cameras miss details. Simple to use, simply stunning results.  This time lapse camera will instantly produce high quality videos which are compressed into smaller files making playback on smart phones.  With a TLC200 Pro’s CS-mount interface, you can always choose a suitable lens for your needs.  Turn your TLC200 PRO into a Construction Camera with world record class, long term battery life of 40 days while taking a photo every 5 minutes at the Daylight Scene setting.  The timer function allows you to program when the camera will wake up and begin recording and when it will shut off. You now have complete control without needing to be there to turn the camera on.  Set it forget it.  Field of view: 112°, rotates, vertical rotating direction, angle of rotation: 120°, closest focusing distance: 0.4 m, fixed aperture: 2 mm, lens can be changed.  Click here for prices.

14. Don’t broadcast your holidays on social media whilst you’re there

We get excited about going on holiday and rightly so, but you can always tell people about your adventure when you are back home.

If you are in the UK, click here for a great burglar alarm guide compiled by Which?

If you are in the USA, click here for a great review site of the biggest names in home security.