When it comes to home security, most people are focused on protecting the inside of their home.
And that makes sense — protecting potential entry points and ensuring that if they are breached, you and the team monitoring your home are alerted.
According to the FBI, 2,000,000 home burglaries are reported every year in the United States, with home break-ins being the most common threat.
While you do need to make sure the inside of your home is protected, don’t forget about your backyard security. The backyard area, like barbeques, patio furniture, bikes, and even the gazebo, can be a prime target for thieves.
So it’s just as important to secure the exterior of your home because this is where a potential intruder will first interact with your property.
Here are nine ways you can help secure the exterior of your home.
Secure your outdoor belongings
Leaving tools lying around in the backyard (e.g. shovels, hammers, ladders, crowbars, etc.) offers an open invitation for burglars to use them to break into your home.
- Put away tools either in a locked garage or a secured shed that is “pick-proof.”
- Chairs or tables on patios should also be secured with chains or padlocks to prevent anyone from easily moving them around and using them to help gain entry.
- Secure ladders. If you keep ladders out, be sure to chain or padlock them. A ladder can be used to gain entry to second story windows. If at all possible, store the ladders in a shed or garage.
As you assess your backyard security look at items that can be used by a potential intruder to use to break into your property. Also, if you have tools and other belongings you start to tell a burglar that the home could be an easy target.
Don’t give a thief any reason or tools to use to break into your home.
Use strong fences
Fences are good for ensuring privacy and work well to keep intruders and burglars out of your property. However fences are not all the same in terms of protecting you.
A tall fence makes it difficult for outsiders to see what’s in your property, but it could also provide a good hiding spot for those that find their way onto your property. Wrought iron fencing is advisable because it is effective, aesthetically pleasing and also provides visibility into the yard.
Motion-sensor lighting is an effective way to alert you if there is movement around your home. It can be an effective deterrent to an intruder, however, it’s also important to think about where you place them.
An overactive motion-light can be an annoyance to you and your neighbors if it is constantly being triggered by pets or routine visitors that are not a danger to your home. Motion-sensing lights should also be installed in such a way that they don’t face the house so that the lights will illuminate what’s outside rather than what’s going on inside.
If your backyard is large, you may want to consider installing multiple lights around the perimeter. The objective of outdoor lighting is to limit blind spots and provide you with total coverage.
Plant flowers with thorns
It may sound simple, but thorny plants and flowers around key entry points can be a good strategy for deterring intruders. Holly bushes are a good example of a potential perimeter plant because they are both thorny and attractive. Key positioning might include planting them underneath windows and near the fences.
Alarm systems and security cameras
Alarm systems are a proven way to help deter intruders and even stop a break-in that is underway. The degree of sophistication of the alarm system and how quickly the monitoring stations can alert appropriate authorities will influence the effectiveness of the alarm.
Security cameras can be a key component of your alarm system, helping to deter a burglary and also help homeowners see what’s happening in real-time outside their home. Cameras also provide a way to record a crime that has taken place, potentially helping law enforcement to identify the intruder.
Also consider adding a motion detector to your outdoor home security system. An outdoor motion sensor alarm is a device that uses optical, microwave, or acoustic sensor technologies to detect motion around your home or workspace; and to let you know that there is a physical security event that shouldn’t be happening. Motion sensors are also sometimes known as motion detectors.
Security stickers and yard signs
When on a low budget, it may be difficult to get advanced home security systems like alarms and security cameras. If that is the case, security yard signs and stickers are helpful and affordable. Such signs can be displayed in easily visible areas like the fence, windows, yard gates and front door.
Security yard signs and stickers may discourage burglars and intruders from your property but it may not stop them should they decide to follow through on their plan.
Burglars want privacy. Overgrown trees and bushes provide cover from neighbors. Keeping your yard trimmed and creating a more open space can be a helpful part of an overall security plan.
If you prefer to have a few bushes, around your house, make sure they’re the pointy kind that burglars can’t hide in.
Hide valuables that are in your backyard
Expensive grills, lawn mowers, or outdoor entertainment systems can be enticing to thieves. Taking the time to put equipment away, cover grills and secure outdoor furniture gives an intruder a clear message that you are taking precautions to protect your property.
Get a dog
Dogs are effective in keeping burglars and intruders off your property, even when they’re not one of the more aggressive or resilient breeds.
The sound of dogs barking or growling tends to send a “keep clear/area off-limits” message. Besides, a “Beware of Dogs” sign on your gate or fence also deters burglars and intruders from wandering carelessly or intentionally into your yard.
Your backyard can be a vulnerable place. Keep your property and your home safe by following these few simple tips and suggestions.
Looking for more ways on how to secure your home? Talk to us about how we can help you protect your home and keep your family safe.