It is clear that violent crime is trending up all across the nation. What may not be so clear is what exactly can you do to keep yourself from becoming a victim of violent crime. Since most people spend a majority of their day at home we will start with focusing on home security and look at personal security while out on the town in later articles so be sure to subscribe! This article will cover the basic elements of home defense but if you would like a more comprehensive full lesson on how to improve your home security you can learn more here. With home security, the four basic principles that you need to take into account are: deter, detect, delay, and defend—the four Ds of home security. If you apply these principles it will be much more likely that a criminal will pass by your home and move on to an easier target!
For ‘Deter,’ posting security signs on your property is an easy to let people know you’re security conscious. You are sending a message to anyone who is paying attention that “I’m watching, don’t come around here”. Believe it or not it is still beneficial even if you don’t actually have a full security system. You can get the fake home security signs or generic security signs like those above, anything to let people know you’re paying attention. By doing this you are helping to deter them. Fences, walls and gates at the edge of the property also send the same mesage and are very helpful in making it clear that you don’t want people on your property.
The next D is for ‘Detect.’ There are many ways to go about this, but I have found that one of the most useful and simple to install is the Ring Floodlight Camera. It works for both day and night. You can get notifications on the app on your phone and program motion zones so whenever somebody comes in your driveway in a certain area, it’ll send you a notification. And it even has a microphone and speaker built in so that you can speak directly to people through the app no matter where you are in the world as long as you have access to the internet. The footage can also be backed up to the cloud for later use in a criminal proceeding or insurance claim. This is a very good way of helping to keep people away from your home even if you are not inside at the time.
As I said there are multiple types of security systems and each have their pros and cons. Adding additional lighting is another helpful aspect. While it is common for professional thieves to rob homes during the daylight, the criminals who are just looking for a target of opportunity to do a fast smash and grab will often strike at night. If you apply the principles we are discussing here a professional criminal is likely going to pass your home by for an easier target. So having exterior lightening that is motion enabled is a big help. Criminal don’t like to be spotlighted while they are attempting to break in to a home.
The third D is ‘Delay.’ You want to be able to delay someone from accessing your home by frustrating them so that they have to make a lot of noise in order to sucecessfully break into your home. The obvious benefit to this is that it will give you some time to call the police and be ready to defend yourself. Making your home difficult to enter also requires that the criminal draw more attention to themsleves which increases that liklihood that they will be seen or caught by neighbors or passers by.
To delay a criminal you want to start by having good high security door locks. There are a variety of locks available on the market but the ones linked are very easy to install and will work on most all doors. A second layer that helps to delay entry is having ballistic window film applied to windows that are easily accessible on the ground floor. You can install this yourself, but having a professional do it is probably a better route to go for maximum effectiveness because it can be a little tricky. Another very effective way to slow a criminal down is to add door bars or door armor (pictured above). Both of these can make it much more difficult to access your home through traditional doorways. Thereby giving you time to be ready to respond.
The last D is ‘Defend.’ You need to be able to defend your home, afterall it is your castle and you have the right to be secure in your own home. Unfortunately police response times across the nation are much longer than the time it takes for a criminal to break into your home. So you need to be prepared to follow through with your own security. If a criminal has been determined enough to work through the other three layers of your security, then you want to be able to deal with them appropriately.
Traditionally, this would mean having access to some sort of home defense weapon because lets face it you deserve to have an advantage. It will be up to you to decide if you want to have a lethal weapon or a non-lethal weapon. Be sure to check your states gun laws so that you know what your legal options are in this regard.
For non-lethal or less than lethal weapons there are many options out there but unfortunately none of them are highly effective at immediately stopping a criminal’s behavior, while at the same time minimizing your own personal risk. Some people will choose a small aluminum baseball bat, others may choose a taser or pepper spray or some absolutists may even just opt for hand to hand combat. Where they choose to get training in a combat sport such as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu or Mui Thai Kick Boxing…that takes some serious self confidence!
Others will opt for firearms as a home defense strategy and this is a more sensible solution in most cases. Firearms are the great equalizer. A small elderly women with a 20 gauge shotgun can easily stand up against and stop a large man or group of men, even if they are hopped up on drugs. Of course she would need to be properly trained to use the firearm and have developed a good strategy for dealing with a home invasion but nevertheless without a firearm she would almost certainly become a victim without it. To learn more about how to deal with a home invasion I encourage you to check out this video.
Bottomline is that you don’t have to have to be a crazed gun nut that owns multiple AR-15s, has stocked up several thousand rounds of ammunition and is wearing camoflauge while attending Trump Rallies (even though camo is trendy these days) but everyone should take home security seriously because as we have shown crime is on the rise all across the nation. As inflation gets worse and the economy moves toward a recession more people will get more desparate. Sadly this is just a reality. Are you ready to defend your home if you are forced to?