The incidence of theft or robbery cases continues to sharply spike in Zimbabwe. It can occur anywhere, be it outdoors or indoors. Even cases of cash trucks being hit seem to be steadily rising. Just a few days ago a Securico cash truck was robbed of approximately US$91 000 in Newlands. All around the likelihood of getting robbed is now sky high. I once did an article on how to secure yourself or your belongings when in places like central business districts. Today let us look at practical ways to keep your home secure.
Live A Low-Key Life
Many Zimbabweans are quick to live flashy lives or show off. Some do this openly to the public whereas others do it in their social circles. For example, many people tend to make it apparent when they have lots of money on them. This makes it easy for culprits to target you. Living a low-key life also spans to being mysterious and unpredictable. Make it near impossible for people to figure out your daily routine. Some people are so predictable that you can figure out when and by which route they leave and return to the house. A low-key life makes it hard for would-be culprits to take note of you or plan their strike.
Regularly Assess Vulnerabilities On And Around Your House
Criminals always look for vulnerabilities or loopholes they can take advantage of. Make it your goal to periodically assess your house and surroundings for such loopholes. If you have the money you can hire a security consultant to do the assessment. However, you can just do those assessments yourself – it is not rocket science. Sometimes when I was staying in Harare a thief broke in through the peripheral door to the kitchen. The guy simply tried out a bunch of keys he had and got in like it was his house. Had there been a metal screen door that thief would not have gotten in. That was a vulnerability I had overlooked. Assess your house and surroundings by thinking like a criminal and you would be amazed at the loopholes you can spot.
Limit Physical Access To Your House
I know some of you have tenants and that can lead to multiple people coming here and there. Some of you love to have visitors over and all. Some of you also run small businesses from your homes. These are just some of the many scenarios where many people get to visit your house. You need to realize that this exposes you to possible theft or robberies. You can never really ascertain the true intentions of anyone who steps into your yard. Some people can be using each visit to scan your place and spot what to steal and how to break in.
They can even end up doing it effortlessly without having to break in. You have to limit physical access to your house. Wherever possible meet people away from home. An ideal scenario would be for most people who do not know where you reside. By limiting people you can narrow down the pool of suspects in the event something happens. Never mind those who might castigate you for avoiding people at your house. You might be saving yourself some serious trouble by living that principle.
Have Multiple Layers Of Physical Security
You can beef up your home security by simply adding many layers of physical security. The more they are, the harder it will be for any culprit to enter. Your perimeter fencing must be hard to breach. Have dogs as another layer of security – some households are feared by thieves just because of dogs. Invest in alarm systems, motion sensors, surveillance cameras, and the like. Some low-cost but effective gadgets in that respect are now available on the market. Have metal screen doors, have burglar bars on windows as well.
Invest in installing door locks and door sets that are atypical. The thing is most people now go for more or less the same types of door sets or door locks. This makes it easier for thieves to breach them (like what once happened in my case). These are just some of the ways you can use to increase the number of layers of physical security. The idea is to have as many layers of physical security as possible.
Keep Valuables Off-Site
This is something that some of you might not have considered. You can secure your houses or your possessions by keeping valuables offsite. It is commonplace for some people to keep valuables off-site. These can be things like precious minerals, hard cash, collectables, and the like. I am not sure why this thing of safety deposit boxes are not a thing in Zimbabwe. Find out ways to keep most of your valuables off-site. In Zimbabwe, it is most definitely the case that when thieves break into a house, they will find all of one’s valuables in there.
These are 5 practical ways you can use together to keep your home secure. This will also for the most part keep you safe as well so seriously consider them. These days you should not be too trusting – it can be the people you least expect who end up aiding thieves or being the thieves themselves. Stay vigilant, stay safe!