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Simple dos and don’ts of home protection for newcomers

Your home is much more than just a collection of walls and a roof. It is your comfort zone, where you can relax and truly be yourself.

Your home is a treasure trove of cherished memories and the place where you and your loved ones truly grow as a family.

So when it comes to protecting your home, what matters is more than just possessions.
First and foremost, protecting your home is about the safety and security of the people you love.

Here is a list of simple things you can do to reduce the risk of home invasion and theft:

Do give your home that lived-in look. If your house is empty during the day, set automatic timers on lights and radios to give the impression that someone is home, 24 hours a day.

Don’t post your first name on your mailbox or apartment buzzer. And don’t use it in your telephone listing, especially if you’re a woman living alone. Just list your initial and last name. The same advice goes for your answering machine: on your outgoing message, say something like, “You have reached 555-1234. We can’t take your call right now,” and don’t mention your name.

Do keep your doors and windows locked when they’re not being used. Provided you can get out quickly in case of fire, locking your doors and windows, even when you’re home, provides extra security.

Don’t leave curtains and blinds open at night. Doing so gives nighttime prowlers a good view of you and your belongings.

Do use the peephole on your door when sizing up visitors. It isn’t good enough to open the door part way and use a door chain: a strong intruder can easily snap the chain.

Do arrange for someone to look after your home if you’re away. Have someone pick up the mail, flyers, etc., so that they don’t pile up. Leave your car in the driveway, or ask a neighbour to park in your driveway and arrange for someone to check your house periodically.

If you live in a high-risk area, you may want to consider an alarm system. By some estimates, a home protected with an alarm is only one-sixth as likely to be burglarized as a home without one.

Some insurance companies offer a discount on your home insurance premium if your alarm system is CSA-approved and connected to an external monitoring system.

Do make sure that you have the right home insurance for your house, belongings and family. Talk to a reliable home insurance provider about the suitability of your current home insurance policy, then request a home insurance quote, and weigh your options.


– The Co-operators

Posted: Apr 28, 2015

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