Using Home Automation to Deter Burglars

Using Home Automation

Studies show that the average working class family leaves their home unattended for more than a quarter of the day. These statistics go up when you factor in vacations, holidays, and long getaways. During a family vacation, your home might be unattended for a week or more. Today’s home security systems have put many homeowners’ worries to rest, however they don’t necessarily prevent burglars from breaking into the home in the first place. Typically home alarm systems alert the police once your home has already been broken into.

With the price of home automation systems consistently dropping, this is a good opportunity for homeowners to proactively protect their homes from burglars and other criminals by putting in systems of deterrence. Here are three methods of deterrence through the use of home automation systems you can pick up online or at your local electronics store.

Keep the exterior of your home well lit

Home burglars are usually looking for a quick score where chances of them being caught are at a minimum. When scoping out a potential home to burglarize, one thing that most smart burglars consider is whether they can be seen entering the home by nearby onlookers or neighbors. Make sure you illuminate the entire exterior of your home, including all sides of your home. A home automation system can be used to turn on exterior lights with a motion sensor, light sensor, or at predetermined times. Consider keeping exterior lights turned on at all dark times (on a light sensor or timer) to discourage the burglar from approaching your home in the first place. A motion sensor might not scare them off until they are very close to the house. As an alternative in order to save energy, you might consider putting dimmer or more energy efficient lights on a light sensor or timer, and also including a set of super bright flood lights on a motion sensor which will turn on if someone approaches closer.

Create the illusion that someone is home

In most home burglaries, the burglar simply wants to get into the house, perform their crime, and leave as quickly as possible. A home being occupied poses problems to this plan, and so many burglars will move on to another victim if they feel that someone is present in a home they plan to burglarize. A simple way to make it appear as though your house is occupied is by putting your interior lights on a timer which turns them on during a predetermined time, usually in the evening. If you’d like to take this strategy to the next level, you can also include lights throughout the house which turn on and off at different time intervals. This additional strategy will make the scheme more believable to a burglar that is scoping out your home from the street. Various electronics throughout the house, such as radios and televisions, can also be set on timers to turn on and off throughout the day, creating the illusion that someone is home and actively utilizing them. When on vacation, make sure the sprinkler systems are on a regular schedule so that they keep the lawn lush and looking like the home is occupied because it is properly maintained.

Light Timer

Enable automated security checks

Many home automation systems on the market today have the ability to perform certain actions at a scheduled time. These actions include locking and unlocking doors, opening and closing garages, and enabling and disabling alarm systems. To maximize the use of these features, and to improve the security of your home, make sure that you schedule these systems to lock down your home on a schedule. For example, if you leave for work every day during the week at 9:00 am, set your automated door lock system to lock the doors at 9:15 just in case you forget. If you activate your home alarm manually, set it to automatically arm at 9:15 just in case you forget.

Following these steps will help you stay one step ahead of those would-be home burglars. The best way to stop a home burglary is to make sure it doesn’t happen in the first place.

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