Home Security 101: A Beginner’s Guide To Protecting Your Home

Have you ever peered through the window of your home and noticed that the neighbor’s house looks just like yours? The same architecture, the same color scheme, everything. 

You know what I’m talking about: there’s nothing more unsettling than realizing that someone might be able to break into your home by simply walking through the front door. 

Of course, this is not always an option for criminals; sometimes they’ll need to use some tools or force their way in. 

But still! What if someone could get into your home simply because you didn’t take basic steps to protect it? This guide is designed to help prevent exactly this from happening!

Security Systems 101 | Consumer Reports
Home security should be a top priority for homeowners
Simple upgrades can effectively enhance home security
Choosing the right security system requires careful research
Avoiding common mistakes can help prevent security breaches
Investing in a security system is a smart decision to protect your home

Install a Smart Lock

Smart locks are a great way to secure your home. They can be controlled from your phone and programmed to automatically lock or unlock at certain times, so you don’t have to worry about remembering when you’ve left the house. 

You can also program them so they lock when you leave and unlock when you approach, which is especially useful if someone else has access to the keys (like a cleaning person).

With the rising threats to home security, it is crucial to take precautions. Follow our guide on 10 Home Security Tips to secure your home and protect your loved ones.

Set Up Motion-Sensor Lights

Motion-sensor lights are one of the easiest and most affordable ways to light up dark areas around your home. If you want to illuminate a specific area, such as your driveway or front porch, motion sensor lights can be installed there without much effort.

Motion sensing technology has advanced quite a bit since its introduction in the 1980s. These days, many motion sensors can detect movement from up to 100 feet away–and some even have built-in cameras! 

Motion sensor lights are also useful for illuminating dark areas around your home that may not have been properly lit before (or at all).

Get Video Surveillance

Video surveillance is one of the most important aspects of home security. It can be used to monitor your home and alert you to intruders, or it can be used as evidence if someone breaks in. There are many different kinds of video surveillance, so let’s take a look at some options:

Installed systems: An installed system will have cameras installed by professionals who know how best to position them for maximum effectiveness. They’ll also include other features like motion detectors and alarms that connect directly with local police stations so they can respond immediately when something happens at your house.

DIY systems: If you don’t want an expensive professional installation job done on your property but still want good protection against intruders and other threats, consider setting up a DIY video surveillance system instead! 

These aren’t quite as effective as professionally-installed ones because they don’t always work well in certain situations (for example if there are bushes near where you place them) but they’re much cheaper than hiring someone else entirely

RingEasy to install, affordable, integrates with Amazon devicesRequires subscription for cloud storage and app access
NestHigh-quality video, easy to use app, integrates with Google devicesExpensive compared to other options
ArloWireless options, high-quality video, works with Alexa devicesSome models have limited battery life
LorexWide range of options, including 4K cameras, high-quality videoRequires professional installation for some models
SwannEasy to install, affordable, supports local storageMay require additional subscriptions for some features

Note: When choosing a video surveillance system, it is important to consider the size and layout of your home, as well as your budget, and preferred features. Additionally, it is important to ensure that you are following local laws and regulations regarding video surveillance.

Secure Your Windows

Secure your windows with locks or bars. If you have a sliding glass door, secure it with a lock. If you have a balcony, make sure it is secure by making sure that there are no gaps where someone could get in through the bottom of the balcony railing (if possible).

Secure your basement window(s) as well as any other windows that are not easily visible from outside. This will help prevent intruders from gaining access to these areas of your home by climbing up onto an adjacent structure and then entering through one of these less-secure openings in order to break into your home or business later on!

Choosing a home security system that fits your needs and budget can be overwhelming. Our guide on How to Choose the Best Home Security System will help you make an informed decision and give you peace of mind.

Be Aware of Who Has Keys to Your Home

Give keys to people who are trustworthy and responsible, as well as those who can be trusted not to lose them. If someone has a key, ask them how they would handle an emergency situation if they were locked out of your home (and also make sure you have their contact information).

Keep Valuables Out of Sight

Use a safe with a biometric fingerprint reader, like the ones you see at jewelry stores and banks. These are more secure than traditional locks, because they’re harder to break into and easier to use–you can open them with just one hand or without looking at them! 

They even come in different sizes to fit your needs, whether it’s just keeping your watch or hiding away some cash.

Get a safe that is fireproof and waterproof so that nothing inside gets ruined if there’s an accident in your house (or on your way home). 

Most safes come with alarms too, so if someone tries opening it without permission then everyone will know about it immediately!

Edit Your Social Media Accounts

If you’re not already, now is a good time to make sure that your social media accounts are secure. If a hacker can gain access to one of your private accounts, they may be able to use that information to get into other accounts or even steal money from you.

If there are any posts on any of your accounts that could be embarrassing or security risks, delete them immediately! 

For example: if someone posted a picture of themselves with their friends at a party where alcohol was being served and someone else took it without permission (and therefore broke the law), that would obviously be something worth removing from online circulation ASAP.

Upgrading your home’s security doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Take a look at our guide on Maximizing Your Home’s Security for simple DIY solutions and recommended products to help keep your home safe.

Get a Watchdog

There are many different ways to protect your home, but a watchdog is one of the most effective. A dog will not only act as a deterrent for intruders, but also alert you when someone has entered your property. 

If you choose to train your dog to attack intruders, they can be particularly useful in scaring off would-be thieves or burglars.

There are two types of watch dogs: those that come from shelters and those that come from breeders. 

Both have their benefits and drawbacks–for example, shelter dogs tend not to be as well trained or socialized as other breeds while purebreds may cost more money upfront but are likely easier (and cheaper) over time because there’s no training involved!

German ShepherdIntelligent, protective, highly trainableRequires consistent exercise and training
RottweilerLoyal, protective, confidentRequires experienced handling and socialization
Doberman PinscherAlert, loyal, intelligentRequires proper socialization and training
BoxerEnergetic, intelligent, loyalCan be prone to separation anxiety and require lots of exercise
BullmastiffPowerful, protective, calmRequires large living space and early socialization
Great DaneAffectionate, patient, protectiveCan have health issues and require lots of space

Note: While getting a watchdog can be an effective means of home security, it is important to remember that it is not a substitute for properly securing your home with locks, sensors, and alarms.

It is also important to remember that owning certain breeds can come with legal and social repercussions, and not all living situations are appropriate for having a watchdog.

Stop Mail Theft with a Locking Mailbox

You can avoid mail theft by installing a locking mailbox. When you receive mail, put it in your mailbox right away and don’t leave it unattended. 

If you need to go somewhere and cannot take the package with you, consider getting a post office box instead of using your home address as an option for delivery service providers like Amazon Prime or FedEx Ground (which may require signatures).

If someone does steal from your mailbox, report it immediately so that police can track down the thief before he or she steals from others as well!

Reinforce the Doors on Your Garage and Sheds

Deadbolts. They’re the best way to keep intruders out of your garage and shed, but they can be tricky to install yourself. If you don’t know what you’re doing, consider hiring a professional locksmith to do it for you.

Doorstop. This simple device will prevent doors from being forced open by wedging them against something solid (like another door). 

It’s important that this blockage only be placed on one side of the door–if both sides are blocked, an intruder could just kick down your door instead! So choose wisely when deciding where to place these blocks–you may want one on either side if possible; otherwise just make sure there’s at least one side available for kicking!

Chain lock with keypad/key combo: This is another great option because if someone breaks through all other security measures put into place here at home (and even gets past those pesky dogs), then this last line of defense will surely stop any would-be burglar dead in his tracks before he or she has time

It’s easy to make mistakes when securing your home, but some mistakes can leave you vulnerable to potential threats. Check out our guide on Common Home Security Mistakes to learn what not to do and how to avoid these mistakes.

Hide Spare Keys Well – But Don’t Hide Them at All if You Can Help It!

The most important thing to remember when hiding your spare key is that you want to make sure it’s not easily accessible. If someone were to find your house keys, they could easily break into your home and steal everything inside.

That said, it’s also important not to hide them somewhere where they’re inaccessible for yourself (or other people who live with you). 

If the only way for someone else in the household to access a hidden key is by breaking through a window or kicking down a door, then there might be an issue with how well-hidden that key actually is!

Fake RockLooks natural, affordableCan be easily spotted and moved by intruders
Key HiderProvides secure storage, affordableCan be easily spotted if not disguised
Magnetic Key HolderEasy to install, affordableCould fall off a metal surface or be seen by intruders
Neighbor/FriendSecure and reliable, no costRequires trust and access to someone else’s home/key
Professional LocksmithSecure, professional installationCostly solution

Note: It is important to remember that hiding spare keys is not a foolproof method and can have potential drawbacks. It is recommended to use alternative methods of entry, such as a smart lock or keyless entry system.

Get a Burglar Alarm System or Security System, or Both!

A burglar alarm system is a device that detects unauthorized entry into a building and sounds an audible warning. It can also be used to detect other forms of intrusion, such as fire or smoke.

A security system is similar to a burglar alarm, but it’s usually more comprehensive (and therefore expensive). 

A typical security system will include motion detectors, video cameras, door sensors and more–all connected to your home’s base station so you can monitor what’s going on from anywhere with an internet connection. 

Security systems are great for monitoring your property remotely or when you’re away from home; however they’re not always necessary if there are no break-ins in your neighborhood or common areas near where you live (like parking lots).

There are many different types of home security systems available today–some cheap enough for anyone on any budget! If this sounds like something worth considering then read on below where we’ll explain everything else needed before making that decision…

Installing a home security system may seem like an unnecessary expense, but the benefits far outweigh the cost. Read our guide on 15 Reasons Why Every Home Needs a Security System to discover why investing in a security system is a smart decision.


We hope this article has given you a better idea of how to protect your home and its contents from theft. 

There are so many different things you can do, from installing smart locks and motion-sensor lights to getting video surveillance or even hiring a watch dog. 

We know it can be hard to decide where to start with all these options available, but we encourage you to consider what makes sense for your situation before jumping in head first with something expensive like an alarm system (which could cost thousands of dollars!).

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources on Home Security to help you stay informed and safe:

Smartly Home Secure: Home Security 101 – A comprehensive guide to protecting your home with tips and tricks on home security systems, surveillance cameras, and more.

CSP Alarms: A Beginner’s Guide to Home Security Systems – A beginner’s guide to home security systems including types of systems, security cameras, and how to choose the right system for your home.

DocPlayer: A Beginner’s Guide to Home Security Systems – An informative guide covering everything from basic home security tips to advanced home security systems.


What are the common types of home security systems?

The common types of home security systems are motion sensors, outdoor security cameras, indoor security cameras, door and window sensors, and smart locks.

What are the benefits of having a home security system?

A home security system can provide peace of mind, protect your family and property, deter crime, and may even lower your homeowner’s insurance.

What is a smart home security system?

A smart home security system uses technology to control access to your home, monitor your home, and alert you to any security breaches in real-time.

How can I install a home security system?

You can install a home security system yourself or hire a professional to do the installation. Before installing, it is important to research different systems to find the one that best suits your needs.

Can I monitor my home security system remotely?

Yes, many modern home security systems offer the ability to be monitored remotely through a smart device, allowing you to keep an eye on your home even when you’re not there.