Your home is a safe haven for you and your family, but as such, it’s also the single most vulnerable asset you own. Protect your home from potential property crime, cyber-attacks, and title fraud by following DomiDocs’ actionable tips to make your home safer.
According to the Uniform Crime Reporting Program of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), there were over 6.9 million property crimes across America in 2019. Video doorbell cameras are an easy way to help secure your home from would-be criminals, or you can go the full-on route by having a professional alarm system installed that’s monitored 24/7. Often displaying security system stickers/warning signs on your property can be enough to deter some skittish thieves into looking for an easier target. There are also apps to turn any old tablets or cell phones you’ve got lying around into security cameras you can use around your home.
Windows and doors are common points of entry for anyone wanting to break into your home. Make it a habit to always lock all your doors and windows, including your garage door and the linking door leading into your home from the garage. This also applies to all exterior doors and windows you’ve innocently cracked open to let fresh air circulate. Consider adding secondary locks or entry/broken glass sensors on windows, installing motion detectors along sidewalks, and using security bars on your patio doors. Pet doors can provide immediate access into your home as some burglars can simply wriggle their way through the entrance or can reach up and unlock the door from the inside. Always keep your blinds and curtains shut when it’s dark as otherwise, thieves can see directly into your home to see what may interest them.
Who’s at the Door?
A peephole in your front door provides a wide-angle view of visitors so you can choose to let them in or not, but be sure to add motion sensor porch lights so you can see a visitor even in the dark. Everyone in your household should know to look first before opening the door and for kids to never answer the door without expressed permission from an adult. You can also reinforce the locks, jambs, and hinges on all exterior entranceways. If you only have a simple chain lock on your door, consider coupling this with a door brace or deadbolt for added security. If your door unit has a full or half-panel of glass, add some inexpensive decorative window film to block the view from the outside.
Will You Be Absent from Your Home?
If you’re going to be away from home, don’t advertise the fact on social media even though you might be tempted. It’s a huge white flag for potential burglars as many pick targets by simply friending them on social media platforms. To trick intruders into thinking you’re home, use a combination of light timers indoors that will turn on/off at random times, keep a vehicle in your driveway, and ensure both your lawn maintenance and mail deliveries are being taken care of. You can also go the audio route by using a smart speaker to play the voices of people talking or choose other products that can produce lights similar to a tv being watched so it appears someone is home.
Under Lock and Key
With today’s crazy social media world, it’s tempting to post a quick pic of your house keys from your realtor when closing on your new home but don’t as today’s technology allows for keys to be copied by only using a photo. Who knew? And besides, if you’re taking possession of a home, it’s never a bad thing to change out the locks just to be sure. Don’t leave your vehicle or house keys in an easy to access or obvious place inside your home, it’s better to put them out of sight in a drawer or somewhere less visible. When your car is in the driveway, don’t leave your house key or your garage door opener inside as these are easy targets for thieves who can then return later to ransack your home. If you’re having work done in your home, ensure all windows and doors are locked once the work crew has left for the day so that an unscrupulous worker can’t return to enter through an unlocked window later on.
The American Red Cross responds to an emergency event every 8 minutes across the country, including an average of 60,000+ disaster responses annually. Prepping for a natural disaster is key to keeping everyone in your household safe. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) encourages homes to be self-sufficient for a minimum of three days including shelter, food, water, sanitation, medication, first aid supplies, and a battery-operated radio for accessing/monitoring local weather alerts. Your family should also have an emergency evacuation plan in place which you should practice a few times a year.
Who’s Lurking Inside Your Computer?
Teach your kids to alert you to anyone who’s asking them for passwords or alarm codes especially when strangers approach them online. Secure your wireless home network with a strong password or a passphrase and don’t fill out those silly social media quizzes that list your personal information such as names of pets or streets you grew up on unless you’re absolutely certain none of them are being used as internet passwords. You can securely store all of your vital homeowner documents online with DomiDocs so they’re easily accessible 24/7 with the touch of a finger, including copies of personal documents such as passports or birth certificates.
Protect Your Equity
According to the FBI, mortgage and title fraud are the fastest-growing white-collar crimes in America. Early detection is the best defense to keep your equity and property safe. DomiDocs HomeLock® protects your home from fraud with the most advanced home title tracking and digital property monitoring available today. HomeLock® proactively scours third-party listing sites and checks official records to alert you before any damage can occur. Criminals can potentially use the equity in your home to take out personal loans which you may not become aware of until the lender starts to send letters of foreclosure. The legal ramifications of such could result in substantial expenses not to mention the threat of losing your home is entirely real.
DomiDocs offers peace of mind when it comes to keeping on top of your home’s safety and security. HomeLock® is only one part of DomiDoc’s home management platform where you can store, track, and maintain your property digitally with ease. For more information on home security, read Top Tips to Keep Your Home Secure.
Author – Connie Motz