Home Security for the Elderly
5 Important tips for creating a more secure home for the elderly.
We all want to choose independent living for as long as possible, yet as we get older a feeling of vulnerability in the home can arise but there are some small changes you can make to home security to ease concerns and bring peace of mind to your elderly family.
When I'm visiting the home of an elderly client, it puts me in mind of my own parents, and how important it is for the well-being of the elderly to feel safe in their own home. I'm reassured that I have done all I can to keep my parents secure and I have put together these trade tips to help you.
1. Door Chain
When used properly front door chains are a very useful way of protecting the property from unwanted callers. It's much more difficult for someone to be persuaded to open the front door and let a stranger in if a door chain is in place.
A door chain should only be used just before the door is answered
Never put on the chain after the door is closed otherwise this may prevent authorised callers with a key or emergency services from gaining access to the property.
The door chain security measure should only be used if the home owner has their full faculties and are able to remember when to use chain and when to remove it.
Consider fitting a door chain on the back door
A door chain can prevent fence hoppers or opportunists taking advantage of a back door left open for fresh air to sneak into the property unobserved if the rear room is unattended.
2. Key Box
A key box fitted to the exterior of the property will allow relatives and/or carers to let themselves into the home if the elderly person is unable to open the door safely or they are incapacitated.
The key box works in the same way as a combination padlock. Once the code is lined up on the lock tumblers access to the box is gained and the key is available. When the key is replaced in the box the door is closed and the code barrel is scrambled in the same way as the combination padlock, to secure the box again.
3. Window Locks & Window Alarms
Window Locks: Fitting windows locks is an essential security measure for ground floor windows and first floor windows adjacent to a flat roof.
Window Alarms: A window alarm is a useful alternative to properties with older window styles. They can be easily fitted to the window glass and are small battery operated self adhesive devices the size and shape of half an egg. A piercing alarm is emitted if someone tries to force a window open and there is an on/off option if you want to open the window.
4. Rear Gate Security
Use a hasp and staple secured by a combination padlock on a back gate to prevent instant access from a shared entryway or dark side passage. Stop opportunists from making gaining access or making a quick and easy get-away.
Make sure any wheelie bins are stored away from either side of the gate to prevent easy climb overs.
5. Garden Security
Unattended gardening equipment such as spades make good tools for breaking and entering, make sure everything is stored away securely after use in a padlocked shed or storage container.
Don't leave ladders propped behind a shed in the garden, if they don't fit inside your shed or garage you can buy lockable wall or fence ladder brackets, to secure them safely so they can be used as a tool to break into your property.
Consider adding decorative fence trellis, this is awkward to climb over or planting prickly bushes near fences which are difficult to negotiate.
Most burglary incidents are carried out by opportunists who are looking for quick and easy ways to gain access to a property.
The security measures outlined above make it as difficult as possible for them to be successful.
West Midlands - Home Security Assessment Service
If you are concerned about the home security of your elderly relatives and you live in the West Midlands I can provide an Anti-Burglary home assessment for them.
This service is FREE OF CHARGE if they live in Great Barr, Sutton Coldfield, Kingstanding and Erdington
Otherwise the charge is a special rate of £30+Vat. There is no obligation to have any work done following my assessment.
I also provided this service to West Midlands Police during their Anti-Burglary Initiatives of 2010-2014 covering several areas in the West Midlands badly affected by Burglaries. I was pleased to help those affected feel safer in their homes.
Director & Chief Engineer/ Central Locksmiths Ltd (Birmingham)
We undertake work for West Midlands Police
We have Advanced DBS security clearance.
Tel: 0121 359 4988 / 07860455171