6 Effective Tips to Improve Security at Your Home


It’s an unfortunate truth that crime rates are high and that no homeowner can live oblivious to crime prevention anymore. In South Africa, statistics show over 5.5% of households are affected by break ins. So, it’s imperative you audit your home security if you want your loved ones to have peace of mind when they’re in their own space.

Good news: rising crime doesn’t mean that you’re powerless. We’ll share a few common and other less thought of security tips you can easily implement.

Make Security Visible

Many homes may have security features, such as cameras and panic buttons, but for aesthetic reasons homeowners hide them away. DON’T.

Visual components of your security system serve as effective deterrents of criminals, because burglars often opt for the less risky options. Who wants to get caught on camera breaking the law, right?

Therefore, move your cameras into plain view and they may not even have to be switched on to be your best crime fighting method yet.

Upgrade Your Tech

If you already own a security system, that’s a good start. But it’s wise to stay up to date about developments in the security industry. There may be new devices that will give you more peace of mind than you experience at the moment.

An exciting field with many innovative options is smart homes. One of the most popular aspects in this niche is security items:

  • Cameras you can control via your mobile phone
  • Cameras enabling you to talk to intruders, even if you’re not at home, scaring them off
  • Being able to close doors and switch on systems using your SmartPhone, so your home is secure even if you forgot to turn on an alarm when you left the house

Are you concerned about your home when you leave on holiday? You can imagine how this aspect of home automation in Johannesburg will help home owners enjoy vacations with a little less stress in future.

What’s on the Perimeter?

It’s not only your buildings that protect your valuables, but what’s on the perimeter of your premises. Yes, solid, high walls are more difficult to climb and block your assets from view so criminals can’t see if there’s something worth scaling the wall for. But this same wall means no one from the outside will see if criminals are damaging your property.

Solid walls can actually attract criminals because they know they’ll be able to break in, damage and steal without anyone from the street noticing them. Rather opt for lower walls, or fences that provide enough visibility.

Light it Up

Throughout this article you’ll see it’s important to consider a situation from the criminals’ perspective. That gives you better insight into what home security methods really work. And what do they wish for while stealing or damaging? Secrecy.

It becomes much more difficult to operate in secret when your movements are easily noticed. So, light up your garden and make sure passersby, your neighbour across the street or a local security patrolman can see when an unwelcome trespasser tries to sneak across your lawn.

Change Your Habits

Of course, it’s not your fault when someone trespasses on your property, but have you considered how your habits affect criminals’ actions? One thing to consider is how you store valuables:

  • Jewellery
  • Laptops
  • Vehicles
  • Cash boxes

When a burglar sees a valuable item, chances increase that he or she would access your home to get to it, rather than targeting the neighbours. Why? Because they know exactly where it is, making it a less risky operation. Do you sometimes simply leave valuables out in the open for viewing through windows, or park your car in an easily accessible space for long periods?

Walk through your home today and think of whether a criminal will identify easy targets. Then change your habits and you may prevent future incidents.

Use Nature to Your Benefit

While you’re deciding on which technology to install, don’t underestimate the power of plants. They can serve as powerful deterrents.

We’ll say it again: criminals often pursue the easiest option. Many plants make it difficult or painful for trespassers to access an area or scale a wall:

  • Rose bushes
  • Blackberries
  • Porcupine Tomato
  • Firethorn

Use your green finger to protect your home and you have an easy, budget friendly solution.


What’s the biggest lesson today? Do some research into the mindset of criminals and you’ll discover many practical ways to deter them in future.

Please, if you have more tips for other homeowners, leave them in our comments section.

Ellen Hollington

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