The concept of being a Gray Man for your person can and should apply to your house also. If you walk around in your blue jeans and a tee shirt, but your home looks like Fort Knox….you’re not succeeding at your goal.
How to ready your home for SHTF without looking like you’re readying your home. For decades police have advocated making your home unappealing for potential thieves and it applies here. You want to make your house look difficult to access without making it look like you’re ready for something.
Below are some easy improvements that you can do to your house to harden it, and do it covertly.
- Bushes under windows – You don’t want to block your view to look out, but you don’t want people to be able to reach your windows. Thick bushes will make it difficult to get right to the window, and prickly thick bushes would be best. A bush like a type of Holly is a good example of utilitarian bush to restrict access to your windows. A bush like a Blackberry (with thorns) is a good example of a bush that would restrict access to your windows, but also provide a food source for you. Both of these will grow taller though so pruning is required for them.
- Sturdy doors – Get solid wood or metal doors with a good deadbolt that is very secure in the door frame for all exterior doors. There are interior door braces you can get that will also aid in keeping the door in place and the problems out, which are easily put in a closet when not in use.
- Good lighting – At night like other pests, most interlopers do not want to operate in the light for everyone to see. Installing a well-protected and bright motion sensing light will make many scurry for cover. One side note though, if the grid is down, I would turn the lights off. No sense advertising that you have power if you’re trying to keep it to yourself.
- Good locks – Simplest and cheapest item to help protect your house are locks. A good deadbolt paired with a standard twist lock and perhaps an interior brace will discourage many.
- Security system sign – This of course only works when power is on, but it has been proven that given the choice of a home with a sign and without a sign, most will opt for the one without. Does this mean that the home with the sign has an alarm system….no, but you never know. I would also recommend a sound component to draw attention since it may take some time for law enforcement to arrive.
- Get a dog – This is a matter of choice. Dogs can be a big responsibility to take care of, between walks, food, and water. Some dogs also bark at the drop if a hat which could give you away, which can endanger you instead of help. Big dogs are scarier, but maybe all you want is some noise to warn you.
- Blinds/Curtains – Blinds/Curtains serve many possible purposes other than for security, but they can provide a simple, but effective deterrent. If the criminals can’t see in to see what you have they may not risk it, the danger of getting in for possible scraps.
Something that many don’t think about that can give away what you have in your home are your vehicles. Do not advertise on your vehicle what/who you support. If you are an ardent supporter of the NRA…..don’t show it. People pay attention more than you think to what information you advertise on you vehicle. One of my neighbors had their house broken into and only guns were taken. The police believe the thief knew what they were after before breaking in, because an eye witness said the criminal left with a nondescript guitar case big enough to carry rifles. The police also believe he knew what he was after by the bumper stickers on my neighbor’s car and SUV.
Stay active, pay attention, and get prepared.