Home Security
A Checklist for a Safer & Secure Home…....

As a resident of this community you can deter crime in your neighborhood by simply making a thief work. How you ask? Well most thieves are looking for one thing……” OPPORTUNITY”. If you make it more difficult and time consuming, he or she will likely go elsewhere. The longer it takes a burglar to get what he or she wants results in them taking more time. The more time they spend at their task, the better likelihood he or she will be caught. It is a simple fact that a burglar will likely move on to an easier target if they have to work too hard.

This checklist recommends some easy ways to better secure your residence.

  • All exterior doors have good-quality deadbolt locks with no less than a 1" throw.
  • All latch-strike plates on the exterior doors are secured with at least 3" screws.
  • All exterior doors without glass have a wide-angle door-viewer installed for identifying visitors.
  • All exterior doors are constructed of solid wood.
  • The locks on all exterior doors have been changed since moving into your home.
  • You always lock all of your doors when you are home for the night, or when you leave your residence.

Sliding Glass Doors
  • Try to have sliding glass doors have at least one of the following:
    • Track lock
    • Insertion pin lock
    • Hinged door bar
    • Metal or wooden dowel in track
  • Have all auxiliary locks prevent the door from being lifted out of its track.

Exterior Lighting
  • Make sure that the front doorway is lit well enough to enable you to identify visitors at night.
  • All other entrances are well illuminated.
  • Floodlights, or some other type of area illumination, cover all exterior sections of your home and property.
  • Have some exterior lighting controlled by motion sensors.

Garage Doors
  • The overhead garage door, if equipped with an automatic opener, uses a "rolling code" to prevent "code grabbing".
  • The overhead garage door, if not equipped with an automatic opener, has good-quality padlocks installed on both sides of the door.
  • The small exterior doorway and the door from the garage into your home have quality deadbolts.
  • Always close your overhead garage door, when you are not in the garage or when it is out of your view.

  • Have windows secured with an auxiliary keyed or hex screw window lock to prevent easy opening.
  • The keys or hex keys are readily available in an emergency.
  • If you do not have keyed or hex screw locks installed, your windows are additionally secured with pins or nails.
  • Buy auxiliary window locks that allow ventilation while maintaining security.

  • Make sure that bushes, trees, and shrubs are trimmed to eliminate areas for a person to hide near your door and windows, where they can “work” out of site.
  • Have tree limbs trimmed to prevent access to upper floor windows or access points.
  • All outdoor plants are trimmed to prevent obstruction of any exterior lighting.

Exterior Entries and Valuables
  • Make sure gates are locked with good, weatherproof padlocks.
  • All sheds or outbuildings are secured with proper locks.
  • All items stored outside (bikes, ladders, lawnmowers, motorcycles, etc.) are secured to a fixed, immovable object.

Interior Security While You Are Away
  • Several lights in the home have an automatic timer.
  • Make sure you have a home alarm system that is working properly.
  • Remember to set the alarm before you leave.
  • Set the alarm if you are going to be in the back yard for extended periods.
  • Cancel newspaper service when you are on vacation.
  • Arrange for a friend or neighbor to come and check on your home when you plan to be away several days or longer.

Gun Safety
  • Make sure guns are securely stored in a locked box, safe, or vault.
  • Store Firearms and ammunition in separate locations.
  • Firearms for home protection are secured with a trigger guard lock at the very least.
  • It is a good idea to train every household member to treat every gun as if it were loaded, and they know the rules of gun safety. Remember children are curious by nature, so be sure to stress that firearms are NOT toys.

The Telephone:
  • Telephone numbers for Police, Fire Department, and local Poison Control Center, along with any emergency contact numbers, are posted near the telephone.

Fire and Carbon Monoxide
  • Have detectors located in the following areas:
    • Hallways near bedrooms (so it can be heard clearly by all family members).
    • Near the family room and kitchen
    • At the top of any stairway
    • The basement
    • The garage
  • Have carbon monoxide detectors located in the same areas as your smoke detectors, and there is an additional carbon monoxide detector located near the furnace.
  • Have ABC-type fire extinguishers in your kitchen, garage, and basement.
  • Brief members of your household as to the location of extinguishers, emergency numbers, etc.
  • Test your smoke detectors at least once a month.
  • Replace the batteries in your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors twice a year.
  • Keep flammables stored in original, marked containers away from sources of heat or flame.

It is also a good idea to keep valuable documents and possessions stored in a fire-rated safe.