Since the dawn of the 20th century, the amount of people living by themselves has steadily increased. Living alone can be exciting, lonely, organized, hedonistic, and hermetic. However living alone comes with it’s own range of safety concerns. In this blog entry I’ll detail some of the most important tips that can be of value when you’re living by yourself.
Make sure that your closest friends know your general routine, so that they notice when you’re not around or aren’t on your usual plan. If you let your friends know if you’re going to be away or if you’re unfortunately injured it’s basically creating a security net that can step in when things go wrong. People will check in on you – even if they just do so on the phone.
Consider getting a House Sitter
This can be someone who sleeps at your home when you’re away or stops by every now and then while you’re absent to check if everything is OK. This is a must if you have pets in the home that will be left unattended, as they need interaction and food. However long your house is occupied by a trustworthy person is just as long as it remains safe from burglars.
Close your Windows
Only leave windows open a crack if you need to leave an open window at night. The majority of criminals would prefer a quick and easy entry point; the majority of them would seize the opportunity to enter through an open window. If you’re keeping a window open, let it be right near where you’re sleeping – or as far from it as possible, depending on how scared you are about potential confrontation with the criminal. Otherwise, leave all your windows closed, especially when you’re not home.
Close your curtains at Night
At nighttime it’s really easy to see inside homes when the lights are on. You don’t want strangers to be able to look inside your house – they might spot valuables, get tempted on the spot, or start plotting a future break-in. Many criminals scout neighborhoods looking for signs of empty homes; meaning if you’re away, keeping your blinds closed are a must.
Keep track of who has your Keys, and Change your Locks
When you’re first moving into a place, make sure that all locks are changed; you never know what contractors the landlord has previously given keys to, and they might have copied them. Even if the previous tenant returned all their keys, you can never be too careful, so get your locks rekeyed. Many stores will copy keys regardless of any ‘do not copy’ warnings. Rekeying is the basic level of safety, and changing your locks completely is the conservative. You can choose.
Upgrade with Deadbolts
If your renter’s contract allows you to upgrade your locks, do so. By upgrading the core of your existing lock with a stronger mechanism with a deadbolt, your safety and security will increase exponentially. Upgrading locks is one of the simplest and most effective ways to up your home security levels.
Keep Track of all Spare Keys
Spare keys are a great way of preventing lockouts, but it’s important that you’re not careless with them. Bad places to leave spare keys are under mats or conspicuously placed rocks or statues. Trust us, burglars know to look for those items. By leaving a key unattended, you are increasing the chances that your home will be broken into. It’s smartest to leave your spare key with a close friend or neighbor.
Consider getting outdoor motion sensor lights. THis is great, because it draws attention to any weird activity happening outside your home at night. Also, as a general safety rule, make sure you keep flashlights with fresh batteries in your home in case of any blackouts or if the power gets cut.
Be private with your self-living status
This doesn’t mean become a social recluse, rather it simply means don’t constantly proclaim throughout the neighborhood that you live by yourself. It makes it much more likely that a criminal will overhear you and target you as a potential burglary victim. In apartment buildings, it’s wise to not have overt signs on display that refer to your living arrangement – for example on mailboxes or buzzers list your “Surname Residence” rather than just your full name. This way anyone inside your building won’t be able to know off the bat that you live in your apartment alone.
Adopt a Dog
There’s a reason dogs have a fantastic reputation as guards. Dogs are both territorial and protective – they are basically like a roommate that’s always home. Having a dog in your home greatly decreases the chances that you’ll get broken into. Not only will it make you feel like you have companionship – but they will provide great protection at discouraging any criminals from messing with you – so if you have the time and responsibility level to take care of a dog, you should consider adopting one from an animal shelter. Never buy dogs at pet stores, as these procur animals from puppy mills that are run in horrible conditions, treating the dogs horribly.