The world can be a dangerous and unforgiving place, but your home is your refuge from everything else. Or is it?

While decorating your home is definitely more fun than keeping it secure, security should always be your top priority. Studies have shown that on average, burglars strike every 23 seconds which goes to show that just a few precautions can go a long way.

Here, we take a look at some of the most effective ways for you to keep your home protected.

1. Keep your doors and windows locked

Burglars are criminals of opportunity and they’re constantly on the lookout for an easy mark. After all, nobody wants to break into a secured and protected home.

Keeping the doors and windows of your home locked at all times is a simple and effective way of securing your home. Many former burglars have admitted that the large majority of their victims left their front doors unlocked.

This meant that all the perp had to do was to just walk up to your front door and open it. From here, your valuables are left at the mercy of a burglar. Even worse, if you’re at home, you risk getting into a confrontation with a potentially armed criminal.

Hence whether you’re at home or going out, always keep your doors and windows locked. While you may be living in a safe area, there’s no telling who has their eye on your home at any one time.

Oftentimes, burglars’ case a location by knocking on the front door to see if anyone is at home. If nobody answers the door, he’ll attempt to break into the premises. Burglars hate attracting attention and will most likely give up if they encounter a locked door.

2. Turn on the lights

Contrary to popular belief, a large number of burglaries typically occur from between 6am to 6pm and not in the middle of the night. This is because most burglars prefer ransacking an empty home and not run the risk of encountering a potentially armed and angry homeowner.

However, this doesn’t mean that you can afford to relax when the sun goes down. Keeping your home dimly lit can potentially make it attractive to those with nefarious intentions. Darkness provides cover for a prowler who may be looking to do you harm.

Instead of making it easier for them, keep the outside of your home well-lit at all times. Besides making it look brighter and more welcoming, it becomes significantly easier to spot any potential intruders from the street.

3. Get to know your neighbors

Remember the trope of the nosy neighbor who can’t keep his/her nose out of everyone’s business?

Well sometimes it just pays to get to know your neighbors. Besides making for a warmer and more welcoming community, maintaining good relations with your neighbors means that you’ll always have an extra set of eyes keeping watch.

The presence of a suspicious vehicle or several unknown persons may be picked up by your neighbors while you’re at work or away. If you’re going on vacation, let your neighbors know and return the favor. Getting to know your peers is as important as knowing the odds before betting on NBA picks.

Living within a tight-knit community that watches out for one another can discourage potential burglars from attempting to case the neighborhood. Alternatively, you could even bring forward the idea of a neighborhood watch and take turns keeping an eye on things.

For example, when several neighborhoods in Malaysia were hit by a spate of home invasions, residents took matters into their own hands and began organizing a citizen’s watch. Armed with torchlight’s and batons, volunteers patrolled the neighborhoods in an attempt to discourage criminal activity. Despite the naysayers, these initiatives were a success and crime rates fell by 20 percent.

Keeping your home safe and secure doesn’t have to be a chore. By banding together with friends and family, you’ll be able to stamp out crime in your area.