Purchasing a new home is an exciting milestone, but it comes with a lot of responsibility. We’ve all heard of a home walkthrough, but have you considered doing a security audit on your new home? A new home walkthrough is typically performed by a realtor, contractor, or homeowner before moving in. The purpose of this inspection is to ensure the home is free from defects and issues that could lead to costly repairs or homeownership headaches afterward.
A security checklist is very similar. It will help you get an understanding of your home’s existing level of security and point out vulnerabilities that need addressing. With this security checklist from Pop-A-Lock, you can have peace of mind, feeling safe in your new residence.
Examine the Entrances
First things first, check all the entrances to your home, including the front door, back door, and the door from your home to your garage. Check to make sure each door is made from solid metal or wood, as hollow doors can be easily knocked in. The door should also fit snugly into the door frame, and the frame should be tightly secured to the wall. Make sure your locks are working and that you have a deadbolt lock in addition to your doorknob or door handle lock. When moving into a new home, you may want to consider lock rekeying. This won’t require a whole new lock installation, but ensures that you know exactly who has access to your home.
Check the Windows
Next, you’ll want to check all the windows in the house. Windows should also be made from solid material and fit snugly into their frames. The windows may have locks but these can be broken, so check your windows for areas that are weak or can easily be accessed by burglars. You’ll want to take a look at the locks near the bottom of the window as well as those on the sliding glass. If you have a two-story home, or windows that open to a hazardous area, make sure these windows are lined with window screens.
Smoke Detector and Fire Extinguisher
Some other things to check inside the building are the smoke detectors and fire extinguishers. Make sure your smoke detectors are working properly and have new batteries. You can easily check whether your fire alarm is working by pressing and holding the test button on the smoke detector. You should hear a loud noise. If you don’t, you may need new batteries or an inspection performed on your smoke detector.
New homes are not always equipped with a fire extinguisher. Though it may feel like a pain to purchase a new one, it can be the difference between a quick fix and a disaster.
Update Your Security System
If you don’t already have a security system installed in your home, consider installing one as soon as possible. Most break-in attempts occur through easy access points like doors or windows. Having a security system installed will notify you if someone has broken into your home, or entered at a time when you’re not home. If your new home does have a security system, check that it is working, and more importantly, that you know how to use it. After all, a security system is only effective if it is used consistently.
Keep the Perimeter of Your Home Well Lit
Now that you’ve checked some things inside the house, let’s walk around the perimeter of your home to make sure everything is in tip-top shape. You want to make sure the outside of your home is well lit on every side. This will make it more difficult for burglars to break in and harder for them to escape without being noticed. You want your lighting to be motion-activated, especially near the doors and windows where they are most needed.
Clean Up That Foliage
This may sound like a landscaping tip more than a security tip, but make sure your yard is well kept. Overgrown bushes and trees make for an easy hiding spot for potential thieves. You’ll want to trim your bushes up to the height of your windows so that you can see outside without obstruction.
Make Sure Your Address is Visible
It is also important that your numbered address is easily legible from the street. If plants are blocking their view, or the paint has faded over time, you’ll want to prioritize getting this fixed. Emergency services like the police or EMS need to be able to see your address clearly, in case of a burglary or health emergency.
Know Your Community
Finally, get to know your neighbors. This may sound like it has nothing to do with the safety of your home, but it’s important in case anything should happen. Neighbors can keep an eye out for each other and inform you if there’s ever unusual activity nearby. If you ever go out of town, you’ll want a trusted neighbor to have a spare key. This way, they’ll be able to do things like collect your mail and take out the trash to help your home look occupied.
This home security checklist will only take about 30 minutes of your time, but can make a lifetime of difference. Just like a home walkthrough, a security checklist can save you from financial burden. By checking off each of these steps, you can be sure that your house is protected from things like invasion and fire. Your safety is our number one priority – if you find yourself needing security systems installed or fixed, or locks rekeyed, don’t hesitate to call your local Pop-A-Lock! We’d be delighted to help.