Being a single mother is not an easy task because you take the role of two people on your own. Keeping yourself and your kids safe is one of the challenges that come with being a single mom. To keep everyone safe means you need to know the potential dangers, safety measures and safe habits for your family. Here are ten tips for single mothers to improve your home security:
1. Consider adopting a dog. A dog with a big bark is the best deterrent to a potential break-in. Choose a dog that fits your lifestyle, small dog but sound huge is best. Unexpected noise or barking may scare the burglars away. And your children will surely appreciate a playful pet; bring a dog back to your house to augment your home security.
2. Be responsible with what you post on social media – avoid posting every single detail of your life on social media. Letting people know through Twitter or Facebook that you are alone is an open invitation for bad people to come to your home. If you buy something online, accept the items in a public place like the mall or the parking lot of your local police station. Don’t let strangers come to your home to deliver anything.
3. Be mindful on displaying your name – Avoid putting the title Ms. or Miss, use your initial followed by last name when dealing with mailbox, phone number listing etc. this way you avoid revealing that you are living alone with your kids. When recording voicemail, refrain from saying “You’ve reached Anne”, instead say “You’ve reached the Smith residence to give the caller the idea that many people live in your house.
4. Doors, windows and locks – always remember to lock your doors and windows at all times even when you’re home. Install a peephole if you don’t have one and train your kids to look through it before opening the door. Replace locks when you move into a new home or you lose your keys, the last tenant or anybody can have a key. Have an expert locksmith to install master key system to have your locks operated by one key. Master key systems can increase security, remove frustration, permit for quick access in case of emergency.
5. Home security systems – the best way to make sure your kids are safe is to invest in a home security system. It helps to keep intruders away and alert you in case of fire or medical emergency. The police will be notified immediately if you have a security system at home. Place motion sensor lights around your home for extra protection.
6. Reach out to neighbors – It’s important to try to get to know your neighbors. Encourage them to call you or come by your house to see if you and your kids are doing alright. You’ll also reduce the occurrence of break-in by reaching out to our neighbors and asking to keep an eye on your house when you are away. Have your neighbor’s number on your speed dial in-case you need help in emergency.
7. Tips on landscaping – avoid planting trees or bushes around your windows when landscaping around your home. Keep shrubs and bushes or other landscaping features at reasonable height. Make sure to trim bushes that are large enough to hide in, overgrowth can conceal intruders. Take steps to maintain your yard to make your home appear more lived in. If your kids are active outdoors, installing a fence can keep them on the premises and act as an effective deterrent against intruders.
8. Curtains – It’s okay to have the curtains open during daytime hours; make sure to keep it closed when it gets dark. When it’s dark outside and you got lights inside the house, it’s hard to see if there’s an intruder outside. Keeping the shades and curtains closed at night will prevent intruder from seeing who is inside the house or how many people are inside.
9. Make common areas of your home well-lit – Make sure the exterior areas, from garage to the front door of your home are well-lit. Homes that are darker or appear empty are commonly targeted by burglars. A light inside the home gives the impression that someone is home and awake. Install motion sensors or similar lighting to deter would be intruders and have peace of mind.
10. Have protection close at hand – keep baseball bat, pepper spray, bright flashlight and loud whistle close at hand. These items are defense mechanism against people who is trying to harm you. If you don’t have a pepper spray a hairspray or perfume bottle can burn your attacker’s eyes. Keep your cellphone close to you before going to bed. This will make it easier to call the police in an emergency situation.