Improving Security on a Budget: 6 Tips for Renters and Homeowners 

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Written by Martin Banks

You know how critical it is to prioritize security, whether you rent an apartment or own a home. No one wants to put themselves, their partners or their children in a dangerous situation. Security is a serious factor to consider, regardless of your circumstances.

Several technology companies offer state-of-the-art home security systems, and you may wonder if you should purchase one for your residence. Modern systems use artificial intelligence (AI) and smart technology to offer you the best security. However, you may not have the budget to pay the associated costs.

Thankfully, other methods can be used to secure your residence without overspending. Here are six tips renters and homeowners can use to improve their home security and boost their peace of mind.

1. Upgrade Your Locks

Door locks play an essential role in home security. Upgrading to high-quality locks can grant you peace of mind. Many are available on the market, including smart locks, vertical locks, and single or double cylinder locks.

Choose a lock that receives a Grade 1 rating from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). This is the highest rating level for residential security. However, some may be over your budget. If you cannot replace your door lock, consider installing a reliable deadbolt to make your doors more secure.

2. Install Affordable Outdoor Lighting

A simple way to deter potential burglars is to use some form of outdoor security lighting. This acts as a deterrent and can decrease the likelihood of a criminal targeting your home or apartment.

One outdoor lighting study took place in neighborhoods with elevated crime rates in New York City. It was found that outdoor lighting decreased the likelihood of crime by 40%, proving that outdoor lighting is a cheap and effective home security solution. Rather than buy a whole security system, an affordable outdoor light that can detect motion can offer protection.

3. Cover Windows and Doors With Shades or Curtains

A criminal may attempt to look into your apartment or home through windows. They may do this to check if anyone’s there or if you have any valuables worth stealing. Covering all your windows and any see-through doors with shades or curtains can give you a sense of privacy and security.

It’s also good to use window locks as another safety precaution. They are relatively easy to install and add another layer of protection, making it harder for a burglar to sneak into your home.

4. Consider Defensive Landscaping Designs

Believe it or not, many people will use unique landscaping techniques to improve their home security. This is referred to as defensive landscaping. You want to get rid of any places where criminals can hide under or behind, cut down trees near second-story windows, and consider planting hedges or bushes to act as a physical barrier and deterrent.

You can even use bushes or plants with sharp thorns, making it like an obstacle course for criminals trying to enter your home. Who would want to walk through a set of prickly hedges? These types of landscaping ideas can help improve your home security.

5. Put up Security Decoys

Signage can act as another criminal deterrent. For example, put up a “Beware of Dog” sign or a home security sticker on your window. Even placing fake surveillance cameras near your entry points can deter criminals from breaking into your home or apartment.

The best part about using security decoys is that they’re cheap, and you don’t even need to own a dog or a security system to use them. You can find them online and have them shipped to you directly for your convenience. However, you must understand these decoys should be used in tandem with other security measures because they’re not foolproof.

6. Pack a Safety Bag

Packing a safety bag to bring with you during a home invasion or other emergency can be a lifesaver. Emergencies happen, especially if the criminal finds a creative way to enter your home.

A packed bag with essential items can help you feel more prepared if an emergency or unexpected situation arises at home. Pack items such as a phone charger, bundle of cash, an extra set of clothing, important medications, a small, portable first-aid kit or any other items you deem necessary.

Keeping Your Apartment or Home Safe

No one wants to think about someone breaking into their home or apartment, but it’s better to be prepared and take proactive steps to offer the best protection.

According to the most recent data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), thefts from residential properties accounted for 62.8% of all burglary crimes in 2019. Therefore, it’s critical to move beyond basic home security measures.

Rather than shell out cash to pay for an expensive home security system, you can use the tips outlined above to improve safety and give you peace of mind.

Some home security systems are more affordable than others, so consider setting a reasonable budget and see if there’s one that suits your needs and offers protection. Protecting yourself and the people you live with should be a top priority.

About the author

Martin Banks is the managing editor at Modded. Follow him on Twitter @TModded for frequent updates on his work.

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Image by ThreeMilesPerHour from Pixabay

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  1. Planting Defensive Landscaping really work — plus it looks beautiful. If I had to choose between a barbed wire fence and a rose bush — I’ll go with the thorny roses 🙂

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