DIY Home Security – Top Tips

Many homeowners are choosing to install a DIY home security system, and these type installations are on the rise across the country.

The new do-it-yourself home security systems are becoming easier to install, and include a large amount of security features for a very affordable price.

There are many different DIY home security systems that are currently available to meet any family’s specific needs and budgets. Some models simply include just the security cameras themselves, while others include an LCD monitor, wireless security cameras, and all wiring to basically allow the homeowner to have a home security system “in a box”.

In addition to having a robust and reliable home security system, there are several other “best practices” that you should consider when developing a home security plan for your family, and some of these include:

  • Plan a mock burglary with your family. This will show the homeowner and family the areas that they need to work on in order to make their home and property safe and secure.
  • Often the criminal element simply strolls through neighborhoods checking for doors that have been left unlocked. Make it a routine to always lock all doors especially when home alone or when running even a short errand.
  • Be vigilant in checking windows to ensure that they are not only shut, but locked as well. Many homeowners enjoy the spring and fall weather and use this as a time to let fresh air into their homes. Often these windows are left open and unlocked throughout the day and night. This is an open invitation to thieves.
  • New homeowners should always change the locks on all doors, as many duplicate keys could have been made and passed around by tradesmen working on the home (i.e. painters, home theater installers, other contractors, etc.)
  • When installing a home video surveillance system, try to conceal all the wiring where possible, in an effort to make it more difficult for the burglar to know how and where to disconnect the alarm system.
  • Invest in timers for lighting, and even televisions and other audio equipment, so that when no one is at home, you can give would-be burglars the appearance that someone IS at home, thereby reducing your burglary risk.
  • In certain cases, if not properly installed, wireless home security alarm systems can develop a problem where the sensitivity level of the sensors around the house may cause the alarm to go off frequently for no apparent reason. After this has happened several times, most neighbors will begin to ignore it. Always repair this problem as soon as possible and let neighbors know that it has been fixed and if it goes off again to please report it.
  • Many common thieves use a technique called “loiding” which is the act of placing a sturdy plastic card, such as a credit card for example, adjacent to the locking tongue of a door, in order to press it and cause door to open.
  • Simple placement of a dead bolt will fix this issue, since dead bolt locking systems are only accessible to a thief if there is adequate space in between the frame and the door itself, to use a saw or other power tool of some sort.
  • Often homeowners lose the keys to their home, and if these keys are not found after a reasonable search, all locks should be changed as soon as possible.
  • Any homeowner using a cleaning service should check all of their available references before giving any person their keys. You may also find value in choosing a cleaning firm that has been verified through the local Better Business Bureau.
  • Never leave notes or messages for your family members/others on your doors, as this tells the world that no one is at home.
  • If you’re budget only allows for a fake surveillance camera, be sure and install it in a highly-visible area on the exterior of your home.

Most all of these tips are just common sense. However, with the hectic lives that most individuals lead in today’s world it easy to overlook the simplest things that can cause an increased risk for burglary or vandalism. Make your family aware of the regimen they need to follow to help keep their home safe, and you’ll be glad you did.

Home Security Protection From Credit Fraud and Identity Theft

When someone breaks into a home these days, the physical items that are valuable are not all they are looking for anymore. Some of the bits of paper, envelopes, and mailings that you never think twice about tossing on the coffee table can be the most damaging items a burglar could get his hands on. Identity theft and credit fraud can take years to come back from, and the paperwork and legal battles which must be fought to right one’s good name and good credit can be costly and come out of the victim’s pockets. It might take weeks or even years for the burglar to begin using the information, or for the summation of someone using your details and credit cards to catch up and become known. When the victim has just managed to forget about the horrible feelings of violation that a break in can create, the situation comes back to haunt the homeowner by way of hefty fines from unpaid credit card bills, or a credit report that comes back bad completely surprising the owner. There are some quick ways to keep your home security tight and avoid credit fraud and identity theft. Taking a few minutes to properly dispose of or store various pieces of paperwork can be a real lifesaver!

The best way to prevent a person from stealing your identity or committing fraud without your knowledge is to make your home and mailbox inaccessible. Put a lock on your mailbox and make sure to use it. This way, nobody can simply reach in and take out credit offers, especially pre-approved high limit offers. Having the mailbox locked also eliminates the risk that someone can put together various bits of information about you by scanning your mail on a regular basis. Grabbing just a piece of junk mail or two each week can yield your insurance information, phone number, email, credit card details, bank account numbers and so much more! If you suspect that someone has already tampered with your mail, report it immediately to the proper authorities and get a lock on the mailbox right away. Protect the home by making it more challenging to break into in the first place by using deterrents like a home alarm system.

Should the worst happen and someone breaches your home security and gets inside, make sure all important details are locked away in a lockbox or safe. In today’s digital world, do not store important details about bank accounts or credit card statements in any permanent manner on the computer. Instead, choose to keep paper copies locked away, or take time to save the details on an external disk or hard drive and lock them up. Limit the number of people with access to the safe to anyone on the accounts whose details are stored inside. If you suspect that someone has already gotten a hold of your credit card details, protect yourself and your home security right away by reporting it to the police. Without initial reports of foul play, it might be too late to come back from fraud or theft by the time things get bad. Covering your tracks with a paper trail is a great way to protect yourself. Ordering a credit report at least once a year is another great way to stay one step ahead of thieves!

Home Intercom – Make Sure It’s Working Properly to Keep Your Family Safe!

Once an intercom is installed in a home, years go by and sometimes people just don’t realize the importance of making sure it is running properly. Sometimes obvious problems may occur and they need repaired. Some systems are as old as 20 years and should be replaced just for safety.

Simply go down this list and make sure you are safe:

    1. No Sound or No Power
    2. Scratchy Sound While Listening To Room
    3. Static From Control Panel Speaker
    4. Unit Keeps Beeping All By Itself
    1. Intercom Squeals During All-Call
    2. Intercom Is Making A “Whistling” Sound
    3. These Symptoms Happen When It Rains
    4. Touching Room Switch sounds Scratchy
    5. Unit Is Making A “Whistling” Sound
    6. Sometimes Unit Calls-In All By Itself
    7. Some Switch bank LED Call Lights Are Dim
    8. Bell “Time Tone” Is Not Working
    9. The Bell “Time Tone” Isn’t Ringing
    10. They Can Hear Me But I Can’t Hear Them
    11. I Can Talk “Out” But I Can’t Hear The Room
    12. Room Speaker Sounds Distorted
    13. Room Calls In During Announcements
    14. Room Call In When Bell “Time Tone” Rings
    15. Master Intercom Speaker Sounds “Boomy”
    16. Everybody Can Hear The Office Sounds
    17. All Call Is Not Working Properly
    18. All Call Volume Sounds Distorted Or Low
    19. Unit Is Blowing Fuses Or “Tripping” Breaker
  1. Room Call-In Switch Doesn’t Work
  2. Room Speaker Is Not Working, it’s Low or High In Volume, it’s Intermittent, it Goes In & Out, it Keeps Cutting Out, or it Keeps Calling In All By Itself
  3. Intercom Sometimes “Hums” All By Itself. If you realize your home intercom system is experiencing some or many of the above, it’s definitely time to get it repaired or replaced for you and your family’s safety. Look online for a reputable company you can trust who are fully licensed and insured.