We all want to live somewhere that is safe and secure, yet it seems crime is on the rise leaving many of us constantly worried. Nobody wants to live in an area where you are a high risk of getting mugged, broken into or having your property damaged. This is clear from the fact that house prices in areas with low crime rates are far higher than in places where crime is an issue. However, even the high digit homes are being plagued by crime (just join your local Nextdoor.com group – always informative and sometimes a scary wakeup call).
Proper community support and good policing practices both play an important part in keeping you and your family safe. But, there is also a lot we can do as individuals to help. Below are a few suggestions of things you might want to get involved with or do.
Support your local neighborhood watch
If you have a neighborhood watch scheme try to play an active role in keeping it going. Agreeing to put up neighborhood watch signs are an easy way to do this.
The more signs there are on display the more obvious it is to would-be housebreakers or vandals that if they commit crime in your area they are very likely to get caught. It costs you nothing, or very little, to display a neighborhood watch scheme sign on your gate or door.
Install security cameras
Consider installing security cameras at the front and rear of your home. Ideally, you want to be able to see all parts of the exterior of your property, but be careful to respect the privacy of your neighbors and passersby.
Take your time and do your research before buying. The most popular home security devices now are Ring and Google Home, however there are many different systems available.
You want to install something that comes on very quickly when someone triggers one of the sensors, so nothing is missed. Usually, that means wired or bluetooth cameras. The newer ‘door bell’ systems are nice because you are able to talk to the person who is at your front door via your cell phone’s camera, even if you are out.
Get involved with your community
Knowing your neighbors is very helpful when it comes to keeping your area safe. Everyone is far more likely to look out for the interests of someone that you know. Plus, while talking things over you are more likely to realize at an early stage that your area is being targeted. This enables you to re-double your security.
If you have the time to do so, get involved in organizing activities for people who live in your area. Giving people, especially youngsters, something to do that they enjoy is a great way to keep them occupied and out of trouble. It helps them to feel a part of their community, which means that they are more likely to want to play their part in taking care of everyone in it.
Help to keep your neighborhood clean and tidy
A few years ago, the Rotherham police department ran a 2-year initiative called “The Neighborhood Takes Charge”. During that time, they focused on keeping streets clean and enforcing speeding restrictions. Naturally, a lot of the people in the city thought this was a waste of police resources. They were expecting the level of serious crimes to soar because the police were busy dealing with relatively small issues. In fact, the opposite happened. The crime rate fell by 30%, petty and serious.
So, one of the most important things you can do for your community is to do your bit to keep things neat and tidy. As well as, report issues like graffiti and regular speeding promptly.