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How Effective Are Home Security Systems?

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You don’t typically look to crime statistics for encouraging news, but the most recent ones show a few encouraging patterns. First, there have been fewer burglaries nationwide, and home security systems have a significant impact on this decrease.

The FBI’s 2018 Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program numbers show that there was a 44.2% decline from nine years prior and an 11.9% decrease from 2017’s results.

According to UCR, burglary is defined as “the unlawful entering of a structure to commit a felony or theft,” and despite the decline, there were still an estimated 1,230,149 burglaries in 2017.

Other noteworthy details include:

  • 17.1% of the projected number of property offences were burglaries.
  • According to the subcategory, forcible entrance accounted for 56.7% of burglaries, illegal entry made up 36.7%, and attempted forcible entry made up 6.6%.
  • “Property losses to burglary victims were estimated at $3.4 billion.”
  • The average amount lost during a burglary was $2,799
  • Residential property burglaries made for 65.5% of all burglary offences.

We’ll look more closely at further evidence that demonstrates the effectiveness of home security systems in deterring and lowering crime in this piece.

Are Home Security Systems Effective?

Dr. Joseph B. Kuhns of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte undertook a study to better understand the motivations behind and tactics employed by burglars.

The majority of the 422 burglars who were convicted, both male and female, would consider home security tools like alarms, exterior cameras, and other surveillance gear while deciding on a probable target.

  • Before committing a burglary, about 83% of respondents said they would check to see if a house or business has a security alarm.
  • 60% of the participants said they would look for a different target if an alarm were raised.

After learning there was an alarm during a burglary, 31% would occasionally give up, while only 13% would always continue. Half of the burglars would flee quickly.

The study’s results also showed:

  • About 60% of burglars’ target selection would be influenced by video monitoring of a property. 40% of people would select a different objective.
  • Residential burglaries are committed by around 50% of burglars.
  • The majority of burglars reported breaking in through forced or open windows or doors. Only approximately 1 in 8 people pick locks or use keys that were obtained illegally.

Other sources support these results. For instance, according to statistics, homes without security systems are more likely to be burglarized than homes with security systems since they appeal to burglars the most.

How to Help Protect Your Doors and Windows

Doors and windows are the most frequent entry points used by criminals to enter homes. For 34% of break-ins, the front door is the entrance utilised most frequently, followed by ground-floor windows and the back door.

By adopting some simple precautions, such as making sure the doors and windows are closed and locked even when they are at home, savvy homeowners can reduce the number of these break-ins. You can additionally spend money on the following extra home security system features:

  • Add a smart lock and doorbell camera to your front door to strengthen it.
  • To secure entryways, install sensors on the windows and doors.
  • Purchase a garage door sensor.

Reinforce Your Front Door With a Smart Lock and Doorbell Camera

You can install a solid-core front door in its place of a hollow one, add a heavy-duty deadbolt, reinforce the plate, or, if you aren’t the first person to live in the house or apartment, have the lock rekeyed.

A smart lock and a doorbell camera that can be programmed to send an alert to your smartphone if someone rings the doorbell or even just approaches the door and is detected by the system’s motion-detection sensor might be part of a home security solution for front door safety.

Even if you are far from your home, you can decide whether to open the door by speaking to the guest over a speaker. Even better, you can programme the camera to start recording whenever the doorbell rings or someone approaches.

Install Window and Door Sensors to Help Protect Entryway

When you leave the house or go to bed, ensure sure the windows are locked to make them safer. In addition, you can use security screens, smash-proof glass, window bars or grilles, and glass-protection security film.

Sensors that identify when a window is opened when it shouldn’t be or when the glass is damaged could be part of a home security system. The system may be configured to sound an alarm, notify you through email or text, automatically trigger security cameras to record an incursion, or notify a 24-hour monitoring station that may launch the appropriate emergency reaction right away.

Invest in a Garage Door Monitor

Garage doors rank third on burglars’ favourite targets behind front doors, back doors, and first-floor windows. Homeowners frequently leave their garage door open or unlocked, and in some circumstances, they also forget to shut the door that leads into the house, which invites burglars inside.

Making sure the connecting door is closed and latched, as well as the garage door (which should be locked from the inside if you plan to be gone for a time), are crucial precautions. ADT’s garage door security systems are a good backup because our recollections can be faulty at times.

You can close the garage door with your smartphone and the ADT app from just about anywhere. You may even programme the system to notify you when the door is accidentally left open (or opened without proper permission).

Help Prevent Environmental Hazards

In addition to monitoring for fire, deadly carbon monoxide levels, flooding, and abrupt temperature changes, more advanced home security systems can also do so.

4 Monitors to Boost the Efficiency of Your Home Security System

  • Smoke Detectors
  • Carbon Monoxide Detectors
  • Flood Sensors
  • Emergency Button

According to the National Fire Protection Association, the sound of a smoke alarm provides individuals more time to get away. Furthermore:

  • Smoke alarms were installed in 74% of homes between 2012 and 2016 and were activated in 53% of home fires reported to U.S. fire departments.
  • About three out of every five home fire fatalities were caused by fires in residences without smoke alarms (40%) or with malfunctioning smoke alarms (17%).
  • According to research, households without any functioning smoke alarms had a death rate per 1,000 reported home fires that was more than twice as high (12.3 deaths per 1,000 fires) as those with functioning smoke alarms (5.7 per 1,000 fires).
  • More than two out of every five (43%) smoke alarms in fires when they were present but not operating had disconnected or missing batteries.
  • 25% of smoke alarm failures were the result of dead batteries.

Another advantage? A smart home secured by fire alarms, expert monitoring, and automatic alerts can help reduce the cost of homeowners insurance plans because fire damage is one of the most expensive claims for insurance companies.

When you’re away, security systems can keep your house safe.

According to statistics, June, July, and August are the warmest months of the year, when break-ins are 10% more frequent. One explanation for this is that, like most people, thieves prefer warm weather to carry out their criminal activities. The summers also offer greater daylight because, typically, criminals favour daytime break-ins.

The fact that many people take vacations over the summer is obviously another aspect. As a result, many homes are frequently vacant for days or even weeks at a time. Making your home appear occupied is one of the finest ways to stay safe in this situation. Precautions could consist of:

  • requesting a neighbour to take care of your mail and remove any newspapers and flyers from the front doorway (an accumulation shows than no one is home).
  • a local teen to take care of the yard.
  • connecting a radio or TV to a timer so that it will play sounds that indicate a person is home.
  • placing a home security system in place.

You may remotely control your lighting so that it turns on and off as if someone were home using a smart security system, in addition to receiving notifications if someone breaches into your home. A system with motion detectors for outdoor lighting is also an option.

A smart security system has the following advantages:

  • It is possible to programme automated on and off of exterior lights.
  • If you need to adjust your lighting schedule when you are away from home, all you need to do is utilise an internet-connected computer, iPad, or smartphone.
  • For daylight savings time, some systems can change automatically.
  • When you enter a room, turn on the lights immediately.
  • The doorbell or phone is ringing when the option is flashing.

Even while daytime break-ins are more common, a lot still occurs at night (1,495,790 daytime break-ins annually versus 1,324,090 at night). As has already been mentioned, a home with obvious security features, such as lighting systems, deters burglars significantly. It’s crucial that the lights switch on and off at different times because keeping them on all the time could indicate that no one is home (as well as adding to the cost of your energy bills).

Use Sensors in Areas Where You Want More Privacy

Being secure in one’s bedroom is a concern for many people. Professional thieves were given a fictitious break-in scenario for a 2019 study. They all went straight up to the upper bedrooms, where they stole items including jewellery and cash, skipping the lower living spaces. They took what they could fit in their pockets rather than snatching TVs and other large electronics.

One thing we may learn from this is to be cautious while keeping valuables in the bedroom. A wise decision would be to keep them hidden or purchase a solid safe that is bolted to the ground. Additionally, you may add sensors immediately on the bedroom door, notifying you anytime someone enters the room, to the wider security system in your home, which includes exterior and indoor sensors and lights, video cameras, motion detectors, and more. If, for example, you are at work, you can get this notice on your phone.

Additionally, you may install sensors on particular cabinets, such as those used to store weapons or medications, to get notifications right away if they are opened without authorization.

Read more: The Ultimate Guide on How to Protect Your Rental Properties