Let’s Talk About Balcony Safety & Security
Whether it’s in a flat complex, or a multi storey home, a balcony can add so much to our quality of life. They let you maximise your living space, opening up the room to which they are adjoined to the outside world. It’s our own little piece of the great outdoors and gives us fresh air, sunshine and views of the neighbourhood or suburb. They make having friends over a more pleasant experience as people can socialise in fresh air without your home becoming stuffy or feeling crowded. They are a place to grow plants, start a potted herb garden or enjoy an al fresco meal, without the loss of privacy one finds with ground floor patio decks. Whether your balcony is a tiny Juliet or wraps around your home it is an indispensable part of your life and your general wellbeing.
With so many advantages it is no surprise that people seldom stop to consider the safety concerns of having a balcony. It can often lull one into a false sense of security. The fact that balconies are usually on the first floor, or even higher up, means that homeowners regard them as secure by default. Surely a potential burglar would pick an easier target? But it is precisely this way of thinking that makes them an attractive target for thieves. Homeowners and tenants are far more likely to leave balconies unlocked or even open to allow for fresh air and ventilation. That’s why it’s essential to treat your balcony as you do any other potential entry point into your home. For those living in high rise flat blocks the risks are greatly diminished, but it’s not completely unheard of for burglars to scale multiple stories or gain access from the flat next door.
See how easy it is to scale a balcony, with little effort.
For those living closer to the ground the risks are much greater. A burglar can use a wide variety of means to gain access to your balcony from a simple ladder to parkour skills. This leads us to one of the most important considerations when it comes to keeping your balcony secure. You should always make it as hard as possible for an opportunistic burglar to access your balcony. This means not leaving objects they can stand on such as a bin, car or even a ladder below your balcony. You must also be sure to trim any trees that might provide an easy boost, and ensure that the balcony is well lit, so burglars will get noticed or at least think twice about exposing themselves to risk. Simply put, if someone can’t get onto your balcony, they can’t break in. However, if someone does scale your balcony you need to take measures to ensure they can’t get from there into your house.
One of the main reasons burglars target balconies is because of the prevalence of patio doors. Patio doors come with many advantages. They are easy to open; they allow for views outside; and they open wide allowing your balcony to become an extension of the adjoining room, but these same qualities are responsible for some of their security flaws. In general, patio doors have weaker locks and latches than other doors; they are also easier to break or remove from their tracks; and they also allow potential burglars to see inside and survey your house for security features and valuables.
Balcony safety and security isn’t just about keeping unwanted intruders out; sometimes it’s a matter of keeping children inside. Living in a flat or a house with multiple stories means that a balcony can pose a potential risk to a small child. We all saw the video from last year where the refugee scaled a building in France to rescue the young child on the balcony, but not all these types of stories have happy endings.
Luckily there are measures you can take to make your balcony door more secure. Firstly, you can make the glass surface more secure by having a glass protection film fitted. These surfaces greatly increase the strength of the glass and can also be treated to reduce visibility into your home. There are also a wide variety of locks that can be fitted to your balcony door to keep it firmly shut in place. However, for many people, their balcony door is the sole source of ventilation in their house and keeping it locked up all day, just isn’t an option.
Regardless of what storey you live on balcony safety and security can be divided into two key areas. Firstly, keeping intruders out and secondly, keeping young children (and pets) in. But very few solutions do both while allowing for proper ventilation. LockLatch is uniquely designed to deliver a solution to both these security concerns while still allowing ventilation through your home. This ingenious device allows you to keep your balcony doors open but locked. Meaning that while thieves stay out (and children in), you can still allow fresh air to move through your home. LockLatch is made from C304 stainless steel, comes with a lifetime guarantee and is designed to fit any type of door from modern patio doors, through to French doors making it one of the most versatile solutions when it comes to balcony and patio door security. Read more on the LockLatch features and benefits.
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