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Who Cares About Being Safe at Home?

You are at your most vulnerable when you’re at home, sleeping comfortably (or uncomfortably) in your bed, but is that what makes it home in a romantic sense?

“Home is a name, a word, it is a strong one; stronger than magician ever spoke, or spirit ever answered to, in the strongest conjuration.” – Charles Dickens

What is it about a home that makes it home, exactly?

Do we call home “home” because of the memories? Is it because home is the one place you feel most private, safe and secure? Is it because home’s where you keep all that stuff you own and cherish?

If you think about it for only a second: almost everything you own — from the photos on the walls, to your favorite party shirt, the surprise gift you got last year, and Grandma’s antique china — are all kept in your home. Maybe it’s all of that stuff, the things that we return to again and again after a hard day of work, that makes it home.

Be it security, privacy, cherished memories or physical objects, imagine if one or all of the pieces to the puzzle were lost or stolen. Would you still feel at home in your home if something were taken or misplaced?

Who wants to walk into their home and discover that somebody else, an unknown menace, had been rummaging through your dresser drawers? Who wants to get home after work to watch the big game and find a big space on the wall where the TV used to be?

This scenario begs us all to ask: why is home security never top of mind?

According to US government data, in 2009 someone’s home was burglarized almost every 14 seconds, costing the victims upwards of $4.6 billion combined. Considering that burglary is an increasingly common and costly crime, why do most of us care least about home security until a burglary actually happens to us?

It’s because the numbers are just that: numbers.

I’m not going to burden you with the numbers and statistics, because how do you visualize a number? If you look at the reported crime data from the U.S. Department of Justice, as an example, the numbers themselves are actually pretty boring and do little to spark the imagination. When it happens to you, however, no number will quantify the anger and the guilt or the feeling that you could have done more to be prevent a preventable break-in.

So, rather than waste your time with all of the countless reasons why you should be concerned with home security, let’s get right to the point and focus on why you shouldn’t care.

You shouldn’t care about home security if you don’t live in a home, or if you don’t care who comes or goes from your home with or without your knowledge (not to mention while you’re sleeping or while you’re out). You shouldn’t care about home security if your belongings are everything you carry with you regularly. You get the idea.

If you walk away from this article with one insight, let it be this: ensuring that your home, your belongings, and your sleepy self are safe does not have to be a numbers game or time consuming or even top of mind.

What matters is that you take just a few minutes out of your entire year to make sure that you’ve done everything within your power to secure your home, whatever home means for you.

Yes, the numbers are boring, but until it happens to you, the only reason to worry about having your home broken into is to ensure that it doesn’t.

A good home security alarm system, remembering to lock all of your doors and windows (whether your home or not), proper lighting and keeping valuable items out of sight from passer-bys could be the small differences that save you a ton of heartache, stress, and hassle down the road.

Whether you want to save the memories that matter to you most, ensure that you or your family sleep safely at night or simply want to protect the things you value (both big and small), it’s not science: home security today is easy.

Do you agree or disagree? What is your opinion on the importance of home security?

Statistics from: http://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2009/offenses/property_crime/burglary.html Photo by Kyle MacDonald.

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