Life in a duplex is a truly unique living arrangement. Your space is both your own and shared with other residents and this blend of private and semi-private space means it has its own idiosyncratic security needs. That’s why you need a home security guide that’s tailored to the specific needs of duplex homeowners. Below we’ve collected 10 Security tips just for you.
1. Change door locks
Whether you’ve just moved in, or have been living in a home for a while, it is always a good idea to change your door locks. In the case of a duplex, you don’t know if the other residents have been given keys by the previous owner, and while you would ultimately want to be friendly with your new neighbors, a new set of locks doesn’t hurt anyone, and gives you peace of mind. Another alternative is to look at installing an additional lock or lockable door latch such as LockLatch. The beauty of these devices is that they can be fitted onto any type of door and the adjustable C-304 stainless steel arm can allow you to keep the door slightly open to let fresh air in without worrying about people entering your home.
2. Add window locks
Windows are a favourite target for burglars being the second most popular entrypoint after doors. The reason for this is that windows are often a neglected area of home security. Standard window locks can be forced open by an intruder and, even if the locks are better quality, a thief can always break a glass pane. Lockable window latches like LockLatch or MiniLatch are a great way to secure your duplex windows regardless of their size, material or style. These clever devices with a patented design are designed to install in minutes on any type of window or door and provide an extra layer of security for your home. Even if a window pane is shattered, the latch will still prevent a thief from forcing the window open. LockLatch is so confident in the efficacy of their product, that each device comes with a lifetime guarantee.
3. Secure your sliding/patio door with a door latch
Sliding or patio doors pose their own, unique security challenges. These types of doors are very prevalent in duplex homes, often opening onto the backyard. They are also notorious for being easy to break into. Many feature weak catches and in some instances can simply be lifted off their rail to provide easy access to your home. This is where the aforementioned LockLatch really comes into its own. The C-304 stainless steel arm found on these devices locks the door in place, preventing it from being lifted, while the simple installation process means that it can be easily installed onto metals such as aluminum, which these types of doors are often made from.
4. Replace weak or damaged doors
A weak or damaged door can be as much of a security risk as an unlocked one. More often than not, these can be forced open, providing easy access for a criminal. Doors with severe damage may not be able to be locked properly, while any general weakness could be exploited by cunning thieves. Any weak or damaged doors should be replaced or repaired as a matter of urgency.
5. Trim back trees that might reach the upper floors or windows
Trees can offer easy access to the upper floor of your duplex. A nimble burglar may be able to use these to access unlocked second floor windows or your balcony. Because many duplex owners consider these windows and doors unreachable, they may neglect to lock them and this can provide an easy access point for an intruder.
6. Add burglar bars to windows and gates to doors
Burglar bars and security gates are another great way to add more security to your doors and windows. They provide a great security barrier, while also allowing you to keep windows and doors open to allow fresh air in to naturally ventilate your home. While they are certainly effective burglar bars and security gates to have their drawbacks. Firstly, they can be very costly to install, and secondly, burglar bars in particular can often be an eyesore, making you feel like a prisoner in your own home. If you’re looking for a door or window security solution that can also help provide adequate ventilation, then you should consider LockLatch or MiniLatch, as these two devices are perfect for this purpose, and both come with a lifetime guarantee.
7. Install an alarm
Alarms aren’t just one of the most effective deterrents to prevent burglaries and home invasions, but they can also increase the value of your property. Burglars are on the lookout for the easiest target possible and even just the presence of an alarm company sign can encourage them to seek out an easier target. Plus, any visible security presence in the neighborhood, such as branded security vehicles or guards, will act as a further deterrent.
8. Be wary of strangers wandering around
Because your duplex is a semi-shared property, you may have criminals pretending to know your neighbors, but instead using this as an opportunity to access or check out your home for a future crime. The converse may also be true for your neighbor. That’s why it is more important than ever to be mindful of suspicious strangers on or near your property and to get to know the people who access your neighbors property regularly.
9. Install security cameras by entryways
Over the past few years security cameras have become more advanced, smaller and more affordable. Doorbell cameras like Ring, and smart home security linked to your phone have made cameras more accessible than ever. There really isn’t any excuse for not having a camera installed at primary entrances, not just to see what happens after a crime, but instead monitor these spaces to prevent the crime from occurring altogether.
10. Meet the neighbors
Which brings us to our final point, and perhaps the single most important security tip for anyone living in a duplex, get to know your neighbors! You don’t have to be best friends or invite them to the barbecue, but introduce yourself, get their numbers, and get to know their family and their comings and goings. Since you are sharing a property, you are each other’s best security measure, able to keep an eye out for each other, and communicate about any issues. And who knows, maybe you do invite them to the barbecue afterall.
Start securing your duplex home against theft or burglary with Locklatch products today.
If one thing is clear from this article, it’s that windows and doors are the two biggest security concerns for duplex homeowners. Start your home security improvements by using LockLatch or MiniLatch to improve door and window security today.