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Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home

Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home
Written by Oana Schneider

Do you need an expensive home security system to keep your house safe? Not necessarily. Contrary to popular belief, most burglaries happen in broad daylight. Burglars are counting on you not being at home. They just want to grab what they can without opposition and make a run for it.

Alarms are great (in theory) but a lot of people don’t switch them on during the day, or burglars already know how to bypass them.

Here’s how to keep your home safer without signing up for an expensive security contract.

Close doors and windows before leaving home

Yes, it sounds incredibly obvious, but you’ll be amazed at how often an opportunistic thief gains access through sheer negligence.

Before going out, make sure that everything is closed and locked. Burglars will often ‘case’ a neighbourhood looking for easy targets. The less easy you make it for them, the better your chances of protecting yourself.

Don’t make it obvious when you’re out of town

You can get timer switches that will switch lights or TVs on and off at certain times of the night making it look like you’re at home.

If you have postal deliveries, ask a neighbour to clear you post box and stop things like newspaper deliveries while you’re away. Obvious signs that you’re out of town will turn your home into a target for burglars.

Bright lights and bushes

Outside lighting near entrances make suspicious activity more obvious to passers-by. Lights that are activated by motion sensors will save you electricity and might make intruders wonder if someone in the house switched on the lights.

But if your garden is very private and overgrown, you will provide intruders with the cover they need. Thorny shrubs clipped to a neat, dense form on the other hand, are an excellent deterrent. Plant them as a hedge and in front of windows to make things uncomfortable for potential intruders.

Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home

Alarm and armed response signage

This is a ‘cheat’, but if you can get your hands on signage that says you have an alarm system or armed response security, burglars may give your home the go-by even if you haven’t actually got the matching hardware.

Your best friend

Barking dogs, even small ones are off-putting for intruders. And big dogs are even scarier. Your dog doesn’t have to be vicious, he just has to be there. Some people like to have a little dog for its alertness and a large dog, for its intimidation-value.

And even if you don’t have a dog, there’s nothing to stop you from posting a ‘beware of the dog’ sign on your gate.

Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home

Block sliding doors and windows

Sliding doors and windows are a favourite for burglars. Make life difficult for them by getting cheap dowels at your local hardware and using to block the tracks. If your door can’t slide, it’s going to be a lot harder to slip open or even derail them.

Cheap window and door alarms

Monitored alarms are expensive, but you can get cheap noisemakers that will terrify burglars if they try to open doors or windows. Pop down to your local hardware and look at these low-cost devices.

They’re easy to install (double-sided tape does the trick and they have built-in batteries) and they kick up a huge racket if anyone opens a door or window.

Even if you aren’t home, thieves might make tracks for fear of having alerted neighbours. And of course, they don’t actually know that the alarm isn’t monitored.

Who’s there? Install a peephole

You should never open the door unless you know who is outside. If you have windows beside your doors, you can peep through them, but if not, you should install a peephole in your door.

If you don’t like what you see through a peephole or window, don’t keep quiet – and give the impression there’s are several people in the house. Teach kids to say “Go away, please. Daddy’s sleeping”.

Use longer screws on your locks

In the movies, burglars pick locks, but in reality, they usually just kick the door in. The screws that attach your locks to the door jamb are the weak point, so use longer, stainless steel screws to secure the lock and improve your home security.

For extra protection, you can get cheap reinforces to fit onto door jambs to strengthen the locks.

Be responsible on social media

Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home

You love spending time on Facebook, Twitter and so on, but if you want to protect your home, only interact with a small group of people that you know and trust. This includes family members, friends and co-workers. Also, don’t post pictures or any other kind of information related to your valuables: an expensive car, a secret vault, money you have in the bank, not to mention your credit number!

And remember, you may not want to use the check-in button from now on since potential robbers could use it to see the time your home is left unguarded. Only share a minimal amount of information on social media and you should be fine!

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Budget Friendly Ways to Protect Your Home

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About the author

Oana Schneider

Oana Schneider is a published author located in Chicago, Illinois and was part of our team as a communication specialist and blog editor. She writes about lifestyle, family budget and has a degree in Communications.


  • Thanks for the tips! I always have a tendency to leave my windows cracked in the summertime to let a breeze through, but occasionally will leave without remembering to close them, making a part of my leaving routine before putting on my shoes will help tremendously. Thankfully my road is pretty bright at night, and my dog is extremely loud and will bark at the slightest noise outside. It may be annoying on the day to day but I know my neighbors will be able to hear if someone ever broke it. Also I’m not a big fan of posting my day to day on facebook, but I know several people with public profiles who mention even when to the store real quick. It always worries me, but you can’t control other people’s actions. :/

  • You would be amazed at how many people leave windows and doors open a crack, and then wonder why there is a breeze in the room. It is very important to make sure that all warm air stays inside the home, as this gives you the best chance of saving money on your energy bills. It is certainly something to think about, and a habit that you really need to get yourself into.

  • Since doing my paper route one area I do is well very nice houses, people well off I would say. I have an idea of when they are away but nobody else does or a burglar at least. They have an outside light on a timer I think its on when I deliver their paper but when I drive back around that area its off. Some people inform us as well if they are going away and keep their delivery service for the paper active.

  • I like your ideas and i will put them at a test.I used to be fast and not useful.My door unlocked while i was sleeping,my paying time was awful and my pocket was full of nothing.Thanks for doing this and helping some people like me to become better people and to have some money in pocket too.I hope you will continue with this and good luck in future!

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