How To Make Your Neighborhood A Safer Place

 Whether you’ve just moved in or you’ve been living in your home for years, you want your neighborhood to be safe from crime for you and your family.  Take these actions to make it even safer.

 1) Safety is a team effort, so get to know your neighbors.  Who works during the day?  Who has kids?  Who is retired?  Maintain a list of home/cell/work numbers so you can call each other if you see something suspicious.  For example, some thieves pose as movers.  If you see someone at your neighbor’s house putting flat screen TVs and computers in a truck, don’t assume it’s a legitimate activity.  Call your neighbors to check, especially if they aren’t home.

 2) Work with your police or sheriff’s office to launch a Neighborhood Watch Program.  It unites law enforcement and citizens to reduce residential crime.  To find an existing program or learn how to start one of your own, go to www.nnw.org

 3) Improve your neighborhood lighting.  If you don’t have adequate street lighting, join with your neighbors in turning on your outside lights every night.  An effective and inexpensive idea is to place sensor-activated lighting around the outside of your home, especially entry doors and garages ($20 – $80 at Home Depot or Amazon).  

 4) Talk to your neighbors about home security systems.  Visit a site such as www.safewise.com for information on a variety of systems.     You can get basic ADT monitoring, for example, for $37 a month plus $99 for installation.  Some insurance providers offer a discount if you purchase a complete security system.  The site also offers an excellent Home Security Checklist (click on Learn and Home Security Resources).