Home Security Checkup



It’s a new year and something you should do at least once a year is check your home security situation and decide if you should update or improve anything. Take a few minutes to walk around your home and look at the doors and windows. Are they shutting tightly? Are the locks in good shape? Do you think they would stop a common burglar from getting in?

While a high-tech burglar alarm system might be nice to have, not everyone can afford that. Even those sometimes become damaged or worn. Check to make sure the contacts are closing correctly and haven’t been knocked loose. If you’ve been getting a lot of false alarms, this is the time to do something about it. Sometimes people stop using their burglar alarm because it’s not working right. Now is the time to dig in and fix it or call the company that installed it and ask them to fix it.

In the meantime here are some simple and relatively inexpensive things to look at and possibly fix, repair, or replace that can have a significant impact on your home security.

Keep Your Doors and Windows Locked

This is an oldie but a goodie. Simply locking your doors and windows can deter or at least slow down most thieves or home invaders. If you haven’t already, you should try to create a habit of always locking your doors and windows when you aren’t using them. 

window lock

Inspect the Doors and Windows

Take a moment to look at every door and window. Open and close each one and see if they are closing completely and locking securely. Houses settle over time and what once were perfectly square walls can sometimes settle into a less than square position. Doors can be sanded or planed down where they are hitting the door jamb and not closing properly. Hinges can be oiled and locks can be tightened down. With windows the fix can be as simple as cleaning out the tracks, adding some lubrication, or tightening down a fastener. You can usually figure this out by just looking at the window and moving all the parts. A little elbow grease can go along way.

testing door locks

Update Your Locks

While you’re looking at your doors and windows, you should also examine each lock. Does it work? Does it work like it’s supposed to, or do you have to pull up or push down on the door when you close it to make the latch click? If so, so may need to adjust the lock, the hinges, or the jamb in order for it to work correctly. Does the lock move around when you insert the key or throw the bolt? If so take a screwdriver and tighten down the screws. Those screws on my front door lock seem to loosen up over time and need to be tightened back down every year or so. Think about who has keys. If there are more people than need them, it might be a good idea to change the locks. You can call a locksmith to have them re-keyed, or you can go to the hardware store and buy new ones. This might be a good time to consider upgrading your locks. Every front and back door should have a deadbolt and they should be of good quality. Specifically, deadbolts should be ANSI Grade 1 or Grade 2. If the package doesn’t say it, then it’s not good enough.

deadbolt lock

Reinforce Your Doors, Windows, Locks, and Hardware

It never hurts to reinforce your doors and windows. If the door jamb or window sills are cracked, broken, or flimsy, they won’t stop anyone from breaking in. You can have a carpenter repair them, replace them, or add security bars to strengthen them. For windows and sliding glass doors, simply dropping a dowel or old broomstick into the tracks can prevent most unwanted guests. Make sure the stick is short enough to fit into the tracks easily but long enough to prevent the window from being slid open enough for someone to get through.


Install Motion-Sensing Lights

motion sensing flood lights

Nothing stops a burglar quicker than suddenly being under a bright spotlight. Adding a motion sensor to your porch lights can be pretty easy and not very expensive. The way it works is you install the motion sensor or motion sensor activated flood light and when someone walks by within a certain distance the light turns on. The detectors usually are looking for large warm objects that move. Most can be adjusted for sensitivity so that they turn on every time someone walks down the street, but do turn on when someone approaches your home. Your favorite hardware store can probably help you out. Or go online. Amazon sells LED motion sensor flood lights for less than $20.

Rethink That Hide-a-key

key under a door mat

If you leave a key under your doormat, or under a flower pot next to the door, you’re just about inviting unwanted guests into your house. Get more creative than that by hiding it where nobody else hides a key, or better yet, leave a spare key with a trusted neighbor. If you must leave a key outside, lock it up in a lockbox like those realtors use. But instead of leaving it on the front doorknob, attach it to a pipe or fence post that’s not right by the front door, and preferably out of sight, so that nobody even knows it’s there.

Keep Valuables Out of Sight

If you have big windows that people walking by can see through, make sure not to leave anything valuable sitting there in plain view. Laptops, tablets, game consoles as well as cash, checkbooks, or anything else that screams “I’m Valuable” should be kept out of sight. Don’t let passersby notice that you have a lot of stuff worth taking. If you have jewelry, large amounts of cash or other small valuables, keep them in a safe or hide them away where nobody is ever likely to find them. Most burglars are in and out of a house in under 10 min. They aren’t going to spend a lot of time looking under stuff or behind things, they’re looking for items sitting in plain sight that they can snatch up and easily sell.

Test Your Burglar Alarm

If you have a burglar alarm, give it a good test and make sure it’s working right. Give some thought to how well it protects your home and whether or not you should re-position your motion sensors or other detectors. Make sure all the door and window sensors are working properly, so you aren’t getting false alarms. Consider upgrading your system to include more or better cameras that might cover more of the outside or inside of your home.

Contact Affordable Home Security

If you don’t already have a burglar alarm or home security system, contact Affordable Home Security in Colorado. They can help you out in many cities across the state and even the whole country.

Be safe out there!


Vivint’s home security system is built for automation with advanced technology and modern equipment. This makes it the best customizable system on the list available.

Starting Price$39.99

Get a Quote

Start the new year right and protect your home and family with the best home security packages and equipment. We have no contracts, are easy to install and our equipment is backed by a 3-year warranty. Save 20% + Free Indoor Camera – Make 2020 safer, smarter and simpler by ordering a smart home security system plus get a free indoor camera for a limited time.

Starting Price$44.99

Get a Quote

Helping secure what matter most to you is our top priority. Backed with ADT's 24/7 monitoring, our home security systems are professionally installed to suit the needs of any lifestyle

Starting Price$36.99

Get a Quote

Every home is different, and every homeowner has different needs. That's why we allow you to customize your security system to best suit your home. Get smart security, automation solutions and video surveillance access. Make low monthly payments with 0% interest when you finance. Call today to customize your package!

Starting Price$29.5

Get a Quote