Joyce Crommett, Westborough MA Real Estate, Southborough MA Real Estate, Northborough MA Real Estate

Aside from locking our doors at night and parking cars in a safe place, most of us don’t think about security for more than a couple of minutes a day.

In many ways, the United States is a safer country than ever. Property crimes, such as burglary, robbery, and theft, have all plummeted in recent years. However, billions of dollars are still lost each year due to property crimes.

A type of theft that is on the rise in the United States in identity theft. We are all taught the dangers of identity theft, but are rarely given specifics on how to keep our data more secure.

In this article, we’ll cover basic security tips that will keep you, your family, your property, and your data more secure at home.

Securing your home

First, let’s start with the simple things. Check the exterior of your home. Do you have accessible windows, and are they kept locked? Similarly, are any of your doors glass? If so, thieves may easily break the glass and unlock the door from the outside. At night, keep your home safer by installing motion sensor lights around dimly lit areas.

Speaking of locks, make sure yours are high quality deadbolts. Also, keep track of all keys and don’t leave keys in careless places such as under doormats or flower pots.

Use the latest tech to your advantage

Smart home technology isn’t just good for clapping lights on and off. You can use smart home security systems to lock and unlock your doors from work, check security cameras, and protect you and your family from fire and carbon monoxide all from an app on your phone.

Buy a safe

Safes aren’t just for millionaires and they don’t just prevent burglaries. A good safe will keep things secure from fire and water hazards, as well. Items you’ll want to keep secure include important paperwork, passports, social security cards, copies of financial documents, jewelry, emergency cash, and hard drives or flash drives with photos and documents on them.

Keep your home safe while you’re away

One of the most important times to keep your house secure is when you’re not in it. An empty home is an easier target for those seeking to gain entry into your home. While you’re away, be sure to let a trusted neighbor know you’ll be gone. Have them take in your mail for you so it doesn’t look like the home is unoccupied. Before you leave, check that the windows are locked and that nothing has been left on in the house except for a light.

Protect your identity

To keep your information safe from prying hands hoping to turn a profit, here are some best practices to follow.

  • Shred documents with your personal information, don’t throw them out with your garbage

  • Don’t fall for phone or email scams; unless you entered something you probably didn’t win anything

  • Don’t let anyone enter your home unless you called them first

  • Be selective of the information you share on social media. Never post photos of your forms of identification, or tell others when your family will be away (a.k.a. Your home empty)

  • Always keep your smartphone locked with a passcode

  • Change your passwords to various websites frequently. Don’t use the same password for multiple sites, and make your passwords complex. Instead of words, use pass “phrases” or series of words.

Stagger Shopping Trips To Save On The Food Budget One of the best was to save money on the family food budget is to do your food shopping at a different store each week. Watch the advertisements, clip coupons, and stock up on lead items significantly reduced to draw you to the business. Buy canned goods and other non-perishable items by the case to take advantage of deeply discounted sale items. By staggering you shopping between different stores each week, you will simplify shopping, save gas, and still tap into weekly bargains! Keep An Ice Chest In The Trunk When shopping for food in the summertime, always keep a sizeable ice chest in the trunk of the car. When running errands on a hot day, stash dairy, meat and frozen foods to prevent food spoilage. If you need ice to keep items cold, buy a few bags of frozen vegetables to use as ice bags; you won’t waste your money on melting ice, but rather you will have food items you can use. Remove Mineral Deposits With White Vinegar If faucets are not flowing the way they should or your showerhead is not pulsating the way it did when it was new, the culprit is likely a buildup of mineral deposits from hard water. Forget calling the plumber. White vinegar is a simple solution. Dissolve mineral deposits overnight by soaking the faucet filter or shower head in vinegar. Place a cup of white vinegar in a plastic food storage bag, position the bag over the end of the faucet or showerhead, securing with a rubber band. Leave in place for eight hours to restore water flow to full strength. Include this practice on all your faucets once every other month as a preventative measure to keep taps clean, fresh and flowing smoothly. Buy In Season Take advantage of the bounty of summer by buy vegetables and fruit in bulk and canning or freezing for winter consumption. Fresh from the farmer’s market and to your freezer or canned within hours, you will find a flavor and quality you can not savor from supermarket canned fruits and vegetables, you will save money and learn a new skill in the process. Home canning is gaining in popularity as more and more people seek to feed their family food free from pesticides and herbicides. If you are not an experienced canner, contact your county extension office for free classes, recipes, and helpful advice. Get The Most Out Of A Service Call If you have a need to call the plumber, electrician, appliance service repair person, vet, or home repair service, cultivate a relationship with your service techs. They are a world of helpful information and can give you a lot of tips and advice on how to prevent future problems. A casual conversation with you carpet cleaning crew, the plumber or lawn service are your best source for advice on how to do-it-yourself when a future problems arise and are an ideal source for helpful tips to keep your home appliances and components working at their peak performance.