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What first-time homeowners should know about securing their home

July 23, 2021 3 min read

The housing market has been booming since 2020, with no signs of slowing. Demand for houses continues to surge across the country, driven in large part by people seeking their first home.2.38 million Americans became first-time homeowners in 2020- up 14 percent from the previous year. 

The rush of homebuyers has home security experts wondering if home-owning newbies know how to best secure their houses. Those who don’t do their research and work to understand their vulnerabilities may fall victim to a break-in and miss out on insurance savings that can come from having a security system. Budgets are often tight for first-time homebuyers, so expensive equipment-heavy security systems are out of the question. New homebuyers are busy and stressed, and scheduling a professional to install a complex system would require time they do not have. Luckily, the best ways to protect your hard-won abode are budget-friendly, easy to DIY, and highly effective.

Get to know your neighbors and your neighborhood

The first thing you should do when moving into your house is familiarize yourself with the neighborhood. Check your local news channels and look up regional crime maps to learn of any crimes happening near you and identify any areas you should avoid. If your area is experiencing home burglary incidents frequently, that’s a clear sign that you need to install a security system as soon as possible. 

Get to know your neighbors as well- what do they look like? What cars do they drive? How often are they home? Once you know the answer to those questions, you’ll be able to easily identify suspicious activity. Neighbors can also be great home-protection resources if you’re going out of town. They can keep a watchful eye on your unoccupied home. 

While you’re being a friendly neighbor, be careful about who you let into the house. People who show up unannounced offering a service could be scouting your home to see if it’s a worthy target for a burglary.

Conduct a home security audit

Before you can consider your home protected, you need to understand the vulnerable areas. Shortly after moving in, walk through your home slowly and carefully, noting all possible points of entry. This includes doors, windows, garages, patios, etc. Consider all the ways in which you can secure these points of entry further. This may include rekeying the house (especially if multiple people had access to the house with the current locks), upgrading window and patio door locks, and installing deadbolts on exterior doors. Older houses tend to be more outdated in their locks and security, and therefore may need upgrades more urgently. A contractor or home security expert can help identify areas of risk if you feel unsure.

Find the right home security system 

The home security market is booming, adopting state-of-the-art technologies. This means that there is a wide variety of systems available, each boasting different impressive features to help protect your home. To keep costs relatively low, we recommend that first-time homeowners focus their attention on the DIY home security sector, which allows users to set up these streamlined systems themselves. Be vigilant in your research- amidst reports of security camera hacking, there are growing privacy concerns surrounding camera-based systems.

Hex Home offers a remarkable alternative to camera-based security systems, redefining what home security looks like through WiFi Sensing technology, accurately detecting movements by monitoring existing WiFi waves in the home. The system includes small, unobtrusive devices that can be set up in minutes and controlled through a user-friendly app. The Hex Home system can see around corners and through walls, covering more square footage than their counterparts with nearly zero blind spots. The adjustable sensitivity settings adapt to your lifestyle. 

Additional break-in deterrents

In addition to home security, there are several solutions you can incorporate into the exterior and the interior of the house that may lessen the risk of a theft. 

  • Prevent people from peering into your home by installing curtains or blinds. 
  • If you have a sliding glass door, place a wooden or metal rod on the track so that it can’t be forced open. 
  • Connect both indoor and outside lights to timers to make it look like someone is home even when you’re gone. 
  • Make sure that your exterior spaces are well-lit at night and consider installing motion-activated lights to illuminate any nefarious visitors. 
  • When it comes to landscaping, work to eliminate potential hiding places by only planting low-growing plants near windows and doors. 

The advanced technology of modern home security systems, combined with tactical research, strategic installations, and neighborhood friendliness, can significantly reduce the likelihood of a break-in. If you’re one of the millions of people who bought their first house recently, we hope these recommendations provide you the peace of mind that comes with a well-protected home.