What do you think you need to do to keep your home safe when you’re not there? You might invest in a home security system. You may even invest in a video-recording system, either one linked to your home security system, and synced with your phone, or on an independent circuit. You may even decide to invest in the classic home security tactics of dogs, bars, and thorny plants surrounding your windows and doors. While homeowners can become somewhat crazed and frantic trying to ensure that their home is safe and secure, one of the simplest methods to ensure the security of your home is to use lighting. Appropriately-installed lighting, when used independently but often in conjunction with other home security measures, literally provides a visible measure of security that can help you sleep well at night knowing that your home is safe.
Wondering About Landscape Lighting for Home Security?
How does lighting keep your home secure?
Criminals think twice when considering a well-lit home for the simple reason that lighting makes criminals more visible. Assuming that you aren’t new to the neighborhood, most communities offer a fair degree of familiarity regarding who knows who is coming and going from which home. Even if your neighborhood isn’t so community-oriented, burglars are often dependent on accessing your home through less than savory means that require some degree of exposure: over half of burglars will enter through the front door (often unlocked) or through a first-floor window, and roughly 70% will require some accessibility through the front of your home. Even for burglars trying to enter through the rear of your home, providing increased visibility will deter burglars who wish not to be detected. Since you can’t always control when you will be home, and even home security systems aren’t always a match for theft deterrence, making sure that your home is as visible as possible is a sound way to deter would-be criminals.
Lighting options to improve security
- Provide maximum lighting around the entranceway of your home. Although locking the front door and installing a security system are always sound measures, burglars are less inclined to even try to enter a home that has a very visible doorway, especially if they are trying to enter in the middle of the night. You can use a variety of lighting styles, such as wall-mounted lighting, lamps, or posts to provide visibility from your adjacent landscaping so that your entranceway is as visible as possible.
- Downlights, particularly near garages, on the eaves of patios and porches, or above doorways, provide substantial lighting that makes entranceways more visible. Floodlights are a popular choice because of the bright light they emit as well as the wide viewing field that they illuminate.
- Adding up lights to landscape features in the front of your home as well as around your home, such as bushes in front of bay windows or trees by driveways, provides abundant visibility of critical access points to your home. Likewise, increasing the visibility around your property, such as providing lighting embedded in backyard vegetation through well or path lights, adding driveway and walkway lighting, and step lighting all increase the visibility of your home at all hours so that burglars are less inclined to visit your home.
- While motion sensors are debated as far as their effectiveness in deterring intruders, timers are considered a reliable measure to regulate light availability. Setting timers so that your lights are on from dusk to dawn deters criminals during the time of day when intrusion is most likely to happen. If you are away, setting timers to go on will provide a sense of inhabitation so that criminals won’t think that your home is unoccupied and inviting unwelcome guests.
- If you have a camera security system, increasing the visibility of your entire property will make it harder for criminals to find places to hide and access points to enter your property while making it easier for your camera system to document any intruders as well as reducing the likelihood of blind spots that can impede proper recording. Installing lighting around the perimeter of your property, providing lighting around taller features such as rock walls, fountains, sheds, or gazebos, and illuminating features that cast large shadows or obscure lighting from elsewhere on your property, such as downlighting trees or using string lights on hedge borders, can greatly improve visibility while also deterring accessibility.
- Make sure that all points to your home are as illuminated as possible. Illuminating landscaping around a back or side door can greatly decrease the likelihood that these entrances will be used by criminals, as does illuminating sheds or storage areas adjacent to your property that might be burglarized or used as hiding places. You can also focus the lighting on second-story windows that may be accessible.
Using LED bulbs will increase the lifespan of your system so that you don’t have to worry about lights dying while you are gone, though it’s always a good idea to regularly check your lights and ensure that they are as tamper-proof as possible. While you can’t always deter criminals from wanting to commit crimes, you can make your home a less inviting place for criminals to consider intruding there. Lighting plays an important role in ensuring that your home is visible at critical hours of the day when criminal activity is highest so that you aren’t a victim of crime.
If you’re looking to improve the visibility and security of your home, please let us know how we can help you achieve your home security goals. In the end, a little lighting can go a long way to making sure that you and your home are safe and secure at all hours of the day. Call 262-358-9100 to schedule your design consultation!