7 ways to protect your home in South Africa

From burglaries to armed robberies and home invasions – perimeter security is your first line of defence and should be treated as such. In this article we’ll discuss 7 ways to protect your home with a focus on outdoor home security. 

#1 Electric Fencing

e324115ec7925277811c1052b6e973caElectric fencing is a must for any residential property since without it, criminals can easily access your property and burglarize your home or, attack the occupants and launch a home invasion. Electric fence installations must be done by trained professionals and the system must be properly maintained.

Basic maintenance includes trimming branches and foliage that are hanging on the wires and conducting regular checks to ensure the fence is live and working properly. At a minimum, an electric fence system should incorporate 3 earth spikes (which cause the electric shocks), however, the more the better.

The electric fence wires must be well tensioned and, earth loops should be installed to prevent wire separation. Finally, the electric fence system should be connected to your security alarm system so that any attempted breech will be responded to by a security company – quickly and efficiently.

#2 Gate Automation

Electric Gate MotorHaving to open and close your gate manually is very dangerous and will give robbers the opportunity they need to attack or hijack you in your driveway – driveway gates must be automated. Electric gates must be fitted with anti-lift brackets and must open and close quickly – a slow gate is just as bad as a manual gate.

If you’re concerned about your gate closing on your vehicle you can have security beams installed to prevent the gate from closing if there is an obstruction in the way. You may be worried that criminals will be able to stop the gate from closing and follow you into your property however, modern systems will sound an alarm and notify your security company if the gate remains open for more than a predetermined period of time.

Your gate motor should also be fitted with battery back-up so that operation can continue during load shedding and power cuts. Gate motors should also be connected to your alarm system so that your security company can be alerted in the event that criminals tamper with your gate or prevent it from closing.

#3 Intercom Systems

shutterstock_81482128An intercom system is usually viewed as a mere convenience but, they are part of any home security system and can increase security dramatically. Intercom systems allow residents to communicate with and, screen visitors without having to leave the security of the home and make their way to the entrance.

Video intercom systems can also allow you to see who is at your gate or, if there are any suspicious people lurking around the front of your property. If you have children, a intercom system is essential to ensure their safety.

#4 Installing Lighting and Light Timers

5 - 2009_01_24_Gold_Base_spiked_lights_sideCriminals prefer to operate under the cover of darkness and, if the area around your gate and entrance is dark you will certainly appear to be an easier target. Light timers are the best choice for residential homes since they can switch on automatically after sunset and will only turn on when it’s needed or, when there is activity within its range.

In the event that you are attacked while pulling in to your home at night, it improves your chances of having a passerby or security personal see the attack – which could prevent a robbery from turning into a home invasion and, possible spook the criminals.

LED floodlights with PIS can actually alert you to any activity outside of your property – provided that your gate is close to your house. If there are any damaged or non-functioning street lights around your property you must contact the municipality to inform them of this.

#5 Trimming Down Vegetation

4B5743BFCFIf there are any bushes or trees in front of your property that obscure your view or can pose as a hiding place for criminals these should be trimmed or removed.

Grass must be mowed on a regular basis and any building material such as bricks and sand should preferably be stored inside your property.

Apart from citing as a hiding sport for criminals, dense foliage and stacks of bricks also prevent passersby and security personal from seeing an attack or criminals tampering with your gate motor or electric fence. You can find out more garden and outdoor safety tips in some of our other blog posts.

#6 Installing CCTV

CCTV for your homeCCTV has been proven to reduce the incidence of both petty crime and more serious crimes like robbery and home invasion. In addition to making your home less likely to be targeted there are many additional benefits of installing CCTV.

You can remotely monitor you home from just about anywhere, keep an eye on your children and monitor staff and contractors. CCTV can help prevent crime but it can also be used as a tool to identify and apprehend criminals.

While CCTV systems used to be extremely costly, just about anyone can now afford to purchase a 2 to 4 channel CCTV system. You can follow out DIY guide and install the system yourself with relative ease.

#7 Install and upgrade burglar bars 

While a lot of focus is placed on security gates, doors, and door locks, it’s your windows and balconies that are particularly vulnerable. An overwhelming majority of burglars gain access to properties through balconies and windows. Upstairs windows that are sometimes not burglar proofed are a very common target. There is hardly any point in having a safety gate and strong door locks if your windows have no security and an adult can easily fit through your windows. 

If you’re concerned about reducing the natural light, architectural appearance, or  view of your home, consider installing perspex security bars. They’re quite strong, see-through and will allow the natural light and view of the outside to remain unspoiled! It’s important to maintain a barrier between the inside of your home and the outside. As always, the more layers of security you have, the better. 

Please read the article 9 security precautions and tips for your garden as an add on to this article as it offers you a few additional pointers to secure your exterior perimeter.

4 thoughts on “7 ways to protect your home in South Africa

  1. Think I’ve left something out? Let me know in the comments and help your fellow South Africans make their homes a little safer!

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