It’s easy to think that property crime is rampant in urban and suburban areas while rural areas are mostly safer thanks to larger properties in less populated areas. But the statistics show that isn’t the case.
Property crime in rural areas is actually more likely in rural areas than suburban areas, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. It’s actually easier for burglars in rural areas because there are less people around to potentially witness a crime. Police response rates are also longer since there are less police departments.
If you live in a rural area, this can be a terrifying reality. Luckily, there are a number of things you can do to help protect your home. We’ve put together this selection of tips as a good start.
Build a fence.
If you’ve got some sizable property it’s possible that it rubs up against hiking trails, parks or wild lands. That makes it possible for wild animals, burglars or even just regular people mindlessly hiking around to make it onto your property.
The best way to guard against this is a fence. It can create a small barrier that will keep people away from your home. Since many rural properties also have barns or sheds, it can also keep people away from those, too.
If you already have a fence, it can be worth reinforcing it or adding in locked gates or reinforced doors. This will provide some additional security. Of course, things like drones can still make it over your property and many burglars won’t be scared off by a fence – but many wild animals and accidental trespassers will.
Alternatively, consider growing a natural fence. You can grow thorny bushes or something similar to enclose your property. While this could be more maintenance, it’s also greener and more visually pleasing.
Get a dog.
There are a lot of great reasons to get a dog, but one of the most important is that they can help protect your home. However, there are two types of dogs you can consider to help protect your home.
The first is a watch dog. Most breeds will naturally act as a watch dog. If they see something fishy, they’ll start barking in hopes of getting your attention to check out what’s going on.
The second is a guard dog. These dogs are trained to protect your property, and they’re much more aggressive than most other dogs. Instead of simply barking, they may attack a burglar or trespasser and subdue them until you or the authorities arrive.
Guard dogs require a person who is well versed in what they need. They need experienced owners who understand the responsibility of owning one, so it’s not a decision to be taken lightly. You also can’t exactly get them at your local animal shelter.
Put up some signage.
Signs are surprisingly effective ways of warding off potential burglars. That’s because a lot of burglars scope out potential targets before robbing them. If you have signs that indicate your home is protected, they’re less likely to attempt a robbery.
There are a number of signs you could use. The most obvious one is a sign that says you’re protected by a security company. This shows a burglar that your home is being monitored at all times and if they make a mistake, the police will be called into action.
Other good signs to use include warning potential burglars that security cameras are in use, or that guard dogs are roaming the property. You can even put up a simple “No Trespassing” sign. While those won’t scare off burglars, they can let regular people who might be accidentally trespassing that they’re in the wrong place.
Maintain your property.
There are few things that make your home look like an easy mark for a robber than it looking messy. Overgrown grass, an overflowing mailbox, a broken shed, and more are all signs that your home has no one there.
That can let burglars think it’s not protected and easy to get into. However, keeping your home well maintained goes a long way to putting off potential burglars.
If burglars see that your home is well maintained, they’ll believe there’s a better chance that someone is home or is watching. This will show them that your home isn’t an easy mark, and that they should be prepared to get caught if they try.
A lot of home security is playing mind games with potential burglars, and there’s nothing more effective than a good first impression.
Dot your property with security cameras.
A large property needs a lot of monitoring. There’s only so many guard dogs you can get, so the best way to keep an eye on your home is with a smart security camera.
A smart security camera can allow you to quickly tap into audio and video feeds around your property via your smartphone. So no matter where you are or what you’re doing, you can check in on parts of your home. You’ll also be notified whenever something happens.
This way, you can keep an eye on the front of your home, inside your home, your back yard, your barn, your shed and everything in between. Other features to consider include motion alerts, so you’ll know when something enters your camera’s watchful eye, and two-way audio, so you can tell that intruder to get off your property without moving a finger.
Invest in a security system.
A well-maintained home, a fence and some signage can go a long way to protecting your home, but the unfortunate reality is that if a burglar is determined enough they’ll rob you anyway.
Thus, your best option is sometimes investing in a home security system. For rural homes, it’s best to invest in systems that let you customize how many pieces you can use. This is because rural homes tend to be on larger pieces of land than suburban or urban homes, which means you need more home security gadgets to secure it.
Ooma’s build your own system tool is a good example. You can choose how many window, door and water sensor alarms you need. You can even add on things like motion sensors, sirens and more. If anything happens, you’ll be notified.
In fact, one of Ooma Home Security’s advantages is that it lets you know when something doesn’t happen. So if you leave your window or door open, it’ll let you know.