10 Ways to Value a Home Security System

Determining the value of a home security system can be a bit complicated, but is a necessary task for many homeowners. The Federal Bureau of Investigations estimates that there were 2,197,140 burglaries in 2007 alone; of these, 67.9% of the victimized properties were residential. For homeowners considering the expansion of their home security, here are ten ways to determine the value of an alarm system. 

  1. Estimate the Cost of Replacing Valuables That Can Be Removed from Your Home – In the event of a successful burglary or home invasion, valuables that can be removed from your property are likely to be lost or irreparably damaged. Having an estimate of how much it would cost to replace these items because the perpetrators were not deterred or apprehended is the first step to determining a system’s value.
  2. Figure Out a Ballpark Cost of Home Repairs – In addition to the loss of valuable electronics and other belongings, it’s important to also consider the cost of replacing broken doors or windows, repairing damaged walls and furniture, and any other property damage that results in the event of a burglary.
  3. Weigh Installation and Annual Fees Against Potential Replacement and Repairs – After determining how much a burglary could potentially cost in terms of replaced goods and repairs, weigh that figure against the start-up costs of installing a system and the annual fees for monitoring.
  4. Factor in Homeowners Insurance Gaps – Many homeowners are under-insured, and are often unaware of the fact. After you’ve determined the potential cost of a burglary, double-check your policy to see if a pay-out would even be sufficient.
  5. Determine a Peace-of-Mind Value – It’s difficult to affix a price tag to your peace of mind, but the value of a home security system is dependent on how much it affords you. If you live in an area with very low crime rates and aren’t particularly worried about burglary or invasion, a system will not be as valuable to you as if you were dependent on it for your peace of mind each day.
  6. Acknowledge the Value of Signage as a Deterrent – The signage, window decals and other indicators of a home security system have more value than you might think; in addition to the protection the system provides in the event of an invasion, these alerts to criminals serve as very strong deterrents.
  7. Calculate Insurance Discounts – Most homeowners’ insurance companies offer discounts for home security system, and often the discount is greater than the annual monitoring fees. Check with your insurance company to see what, if any, discounts you’ll receive as a result of installation.
  8. Determine Added Home Resale Value – Resale value of homes with functioning, up-to-date security systems can be notably higher than those without. If you’re considering a sale in the future or even if you’re simply acknowledging it as a possibility at some point, this will contribute to the value of the system overall.
  9. Estimate Total Loss Expenses – Though burglary prevention is what home security systems are often connected with in the mind of a consumer, this is far from their only function. Most also have fire alert systems that can prevent a significant amount of damage in the event of a blaze. If your home were to suffer a total-loss due to a fire because you weren’t able to contact help in time, how much would it cost after your insurance payout?
  10. Look at the Special Services and Their Value – Many companies also offer specialized services that send alerts to designated mobile phones if specified areas are entered or tampered with. These services include alarms on liquor cabinets and gun safes; for families with children and teenagers that might be tempted to experiment when you’re out of the home, this service alone can be worth the cost of the system.

Carefully researching companies and the services they offer, weighing the costs versus the benefits of a system, and considering the crime statistics of your neighborhood are all important parts of the shopping process. Don’t be swayed into purchasing service packages that are larger than your needs, as this will greatly affect the value balance at the end of your calculations.

10 New Technologies for Securing Your Home

Emerging technologies in the area of home security are putting your parent’s outdated security systems to shame. Every day new products are being introduced strapped with bells and whistles that range from merely very convenient features to action-film impressive elements. Here are ten of the most recent innovations for securing your home: 

  1. Smartphone Apps – Many home security companies offer apps for both iPhone and Android operating systems that allow users to control their systems remotely. From opening garage doors to disabling an alarm as you approach your door, there’s almost nothing that phones these days can’t do.
  2. Wireless Protection Devices – Wireless asset protection devices affix to valuable items like electronics or family heirlooms, sending an alert if the object is moved or disturbed in any way.
  3. Biometric Door Locks – Once relegated to the plots of spy films, biometric locks are now commercially available to the everyday citizen. These models scan fingerprints and match them against the pre-approved internal database, eliminating the need to fumble around for a key ring.
  4. Electronic Pet Doors – Pet parents know that the convenience of a pet door is evenly split with the worry of securing their inherent vulnerability. Now, there are electronic models on the market that interact with the dedicated collar to allow your pets free access to a fenced yard without issuing an invitation to burglars.
  5. Wireless Alarm Systems – There was a time not so long ago when alarm systems were costly to install due to the extensive wiring they required. This also put them out of reach for many renters who weren’t allowed to modify their properties in any way. The solution to both of these problems has arrived in the form of wireless systems that are easily installed and do not require drilling for the running of cables.
  6. Night Vision Outdoor Security Cameras – Security cameras serve little purpose in poorly-lit areas, unless they’re of the high-tech night vision variety. Fans of paranormal reality shows are familiar with the eerie green cast and high visibility in low- to no-light conditions; now homeowners can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing that their property is secured in the dark hours when it’s most vulnerable.
  7. Speech Recognition Systems – Struggling to remember a series of complex codes and being forced to change them every time you hire a house sitter is a thing of the past; new systems are voice activated and feature speech recognition software that allows them to respond to verbal commands from approved users.
  8. Home Automation – The ability to adjust lighting and curtains from anywhere, even while on vacation on the other side of the globe, is another burglary deterrent. Mimicking the patterns of inhabitants, these systems can often fool intruders that are casing your home into thinking that there are people inside.
  9. Heat-Sensing Fire Alarms – Hapless cooks can rejoice; a burned breakfast will no longer result in a call from the security company or a visit from the fire department. New fire alarms are heat-sensing, rather than reliant on smoke.
  10. DIY Systems – In addition to all of the new features that subscribers to a monitoring service have access to, there’s also a burgeoning market for higher-quality Do-It-Yourself security systems. Instead of relying on a monitoring center, some of these send alerts via cellular signal to the authorities or an authorized mobile phone.

Tech enthusiasts and security-conscious homeowners alike can have a blast browsing through the new, highly advanced offerings in the field of home security. These are only a few of the emerging gadgets; more are being introduced every day.

10 Reasons Most Home Alarm Companies Suck

Consumer reporting websites and social networking feeds alike are rife with complaints from homeowners regarding their home security company. From incompetent technicians to poor customer service policies, there are no shortage of issues for most clients to choose from. Here are ten of the reasons why the bulk of home alarm companies absolutely suck.

  1. Lengthy Contract Terms – Customers are often surprised to find that the terms of their contract stipulate up to five years of service; as web and telephone-based sales become more common than meeting an agent, “electronic signatures” take the place of physically signed contracts, and many telemarketers neglect to disclose the things that would be in the fine print.
  2. Harassing Sales Calls – Choosing not to renew a contract or even opting to go with another company after shopping around can open homeowners up to months of calls from persistent salespeople.
  3. Proprietary Equipment – After incurring the expense of purchase and installation, most people understandably assume that their system belongs to them and can be used as they see fit. However, systems are almost always proprietary, or “locked out” from use by other companies.
  4. Billing Tactics – Reported instances of continued automatic billing after the cancellation of an account are, unfortunately, relatively common. Some customers have had to go so far as closing the bank account or credit card attached to the security account to put a stop to unauthorized billing.
  5. Misleading Sales Spiels – Another common problem encountered by homeowners is the misleading sales pitch; what begins as a free installation and free system quickly snowballs into hundreds or even thousands of dollars in start-up fees, with unappealing aspects of the contract swept under the rug.
  6. Automatic Renewal of Complicated Contracts – Contracts with a home security company can be exceedingly complicated; as an added bonus, many companies institute an automatic update policy so that customers are enrolled in another term of service without ever being informed.
  7. Monitoring Problems – The sole reason for installing a security system and paying annual fees is to provide homeowners with the peace of mind that comes from knowing that they’re protected from misfortune; still, it’s not uncommon to find out that systems have gone unmonitored or disturbances were not reported by the alarm company.
  8. Lackluster Technicians – One service call can quickly turn into a handful, which is no picnic when appointments are scheduled so broadly. “Morning” or “afternoon” windows create the necessity for a half-day’s cleared schedule.
  9. Faulty Equipment – In addition to having a reputation for shoddy workmanship from technicians, many home monitoring companies have come under fire for the sub-par equipment they provide at a premium price.
  10. Poor Customer Service – The single biggest compliant about most alarm companies is that their customer service is completely incompetent or unfriendly. On some consumer reporting sites, clients even give each other the inside track on helpful employees, sharing extension numbers for the few people who make an effort to resolve issues.

While certainly not indicative of all security service providers, these complaints are common enough to be considered problematic within many. Careful research before deciding on a company is the best way to protect yourself from the people who are supposed to be protecting your home.

10 Reasons to Have Multiple Locks on Your Front Door

Though it may seem like overkill at first glance, there are actually several very good reasons to consider installing more than one lock on your front door. Home invasions and burglaries have been on the rise as economic conditions worsened; even the most trusting people find themselves more concerned with home security. In the interest of protecting your home and its priceless contents, here are ten reasons that installing multiple locks on your door is a good idea.

  1. As a Crime Deterrent – For many burglars, simply seeing that there are several locks on your door indicates that your concern for home security is above average, and can serve as a powerful deterrent. Rather than risk it, they may opt to move along.
  2. As an Impediment to Determined Burglars – When an invader is determined to make a break-in attempt, installing several locks can present such a time-consuming obstacle that they’re either caught or give up before gaining entry.
  3. Your Existing Lock Can Be Reached Through a Broken Window – If a broken window within your door would allow an intruder to reach a deadbolt or knob lock, installing one with a less accessible placement is a very good idea.
  4. Factory Doorknob Locks Are Frequently of Lower Quality – A shocking number of people rely on the factory-installed locks that came with the doorknob, and never bother upgrading beyond that point. If the doorknob lock is your only line of defense, installing another should be considered immediately.
  5. The View of Your Door is Obstructed in Any Way – Foliage, trees and other structures can limit the visibility of your front door from passersby and neighbors; experienced burglars are on the look out for just these qualities when choosing a target. If any part of the view of your door is obstructed, beefing up the defense of that door could prevent intrusion.
  6. Because a Floor Lock is Difficult to Detect – Sliding locks at the base of your door are impossible to see from the outside, and can add another line of defense to your home. Feeling confident that they’ve defeated your other lock, a burglar will attempt to open the door to find that it’s still locked; the noise and delay could mean the difference between a home invasion and an attempted home invasion.
  7. Because You Don’t Have an Alarm System – While a home security system is very valuable, they’re not always within the budget. If this is the case, your best bet is to make your home as difficult to invade as possible.
  8. You Run a Business Out of Your Home – Running a business out of your home gives the general public access to your home address, which could cause you to be targeted for a burglary; especially if your business requires expensive special equipment, you’ll need to be sure that your home is as secure as possible.
  9. For Greater Peace of Mind – Ideally, you’ll never be the target of a burglary or home invasion and your additional locks will only serve the purpose of providing you with the peace of mind to get a good night’s sleep.
  10. You Live in an Apartment or Condo – Apartment dwellers often feel that their buildings are secure, especially if their building requires a security code to enter the lobby. However, waiting for someone to open those doors or even convincing someone to buzz them in can get them past the first hurdle. Because your neighbors may not know who lives around them, a stranger could slip in unnoticed.

The frightening truth is that even good locks can be tampered with by a professional; in the event of a burglary attempt, impediments and deterrents are the best line of defense.

5 Ways to Legally Rid Yourself of a Peeping Tom

Having your privacy invaded by someone peeking through your windows can be quite unnerving. There is often little the police can do to prevent this type of incident from recurring unless the perpetrator’s identity is known, which it usually isn’t. Even when a person is trespassing on your property, you still are limited in what you can legally do to that person. Setting any kind of trap could actually make you liable for their injury. That doesn’t mean that you have to sit back and do nothing. Here are five ways you can legally rid yourself of a peeping Tom.

  1. Light it up. Peeping Toms look for homes where they can see into lit windows and they are hidden in the dark areas around the house. Installing outdoor flood lights and landscape lighting, in the areas where they might attempt to peek in, will often be enough to keep them from coming back. Leaving lights on inside the house in different unoccupied room each night can also leave them confused as to where to find you.
  2. Motion detector lighting. If you don’t want lights permanently shining outside your windows at night, install motion detector lighting instead. These lights automatically turn on when something moves underneath them. No peeping Tom wants to me suddenly spotlighted. It will certainly send them running, if they do choose to return. It may keep stray cats and dogs away from the house as well.
  3. Change your window coverings. If there’s nothing to see, the peeper will lose his motivation for coming around. Heavier insulated drapes or blinds made of a more substantial material, that are kept drawn, can keep any shadows or shapes from creating a picture show on your windows in the evening. Just being aware and keeping blinds fully closed may be all that you need to do.
  4. Landscape changes. Simply making the landscape around your windows less inviting can also discourage return visits. Plant large bushes underneath your windows. Thorny rose bushes would be an excellent choice. Tying some noise makers to their branches can add an extra deterrent to anyone willing to brave the branches. If they can’t stand directly underneath the windows, it will be difficult for them to see in and will make them a more visible target, as well.
  5. Let out a shout. Letting the person know that they’ve been seen will usually send them running. Adding the phrase ‘I’m calling the police’ will help convince them not to return. Then make the call. If they are still lurking around, the appearance of a patrol car should make them realize that you weren’t bluffing.

Putting some of these deterrents in place should help give you a little more peace of mind. You will still want to double check the security of your home. Make sure you have deadbolts on all your entrance doors and they are kept locked, even when you are at home. Make sure all windows are kept closed and can’t be opened from the outside. Installing a security system that would detect intruders attempting to enter would be more extreme, but still an option worth investing if you feel it is warranted.

5 Differences Between Home Burglary and Robbery

The terms burglary and robbery are sometimes used interchangeably to describe crimes involving theft.

True, in most cases they do both involve theft. Nevertheless, there’s a reason you’ve never heard the term “highway burglary” used; and though the name may be more phonetically relevant to their product, the McDonald’s character Hamburglar is nevertheless a misnomer. That is, if this is any indication of his typical M.O.

Allow me to explain.

The following are 5 distinct and important legal differences between burglary and robbery:

1. Specific legal definitions of burglary vary, but generally speaking it refers to the willful entry into a structure without permission, with the intent to commit a crime. Note that there is no specificity regarding what that intended crime might be. We’ll clarify this in just a bit.

Robbery is defined as theft of money or property against an individual by force or by threat of force.

 

 

2. In a burglary, the victim need not be present, and frequently isn’t. Most burglaries, in fact, are committed with the expectation that the burglar will never be confronted by the victim. Further, theft isn’t always the intent of the burglar for entering the premises in the first place.

Conversely, for a crime to be deemed a robbery, by definition the victim must be present. Without a    victim present, in the eyes of the law there can be no robbery.

3. Burglary is judged based on intent. So a person who otherwise has permission to be on the premises is guilty of burglary if it can be proven that their intent for being on the premises at the time was to commit an offense. Even though the person was otherwise authorized to be in the building, their intent for being there was to commit a crime, which constitutes burglary.

Robbery, on the other hand, is based  not on intent, but on result. In other words, robbery is only robbery if a theft occurs, else it would be deemed attempted robbery. (It should also be noted, that force must be involved to distinguish the crime from simple theft.) 

4. Burglary is referred to as an inchoate offense, which means that the offense was committed in preparation for completion of another crime. As above, the other intended crime need not have been accomplished if it can be proven that the burglar did indeed  intend to commit it.

Robbery is considered an end unto itself, in that the sole intent of the offender is the actual crime of robbery, the taking possession or ownership of property to which they are not entitled by force or by threat of force.

5. Burglary can be classified as a felony, dependent upon the perpetrator’s intent for entering the premises. If the intent was simply to commit petty theft, however, the offense would likely only be classified as a misdemeanor.

Robbery is always a felony because it always, by definition, involves force or the threat of force.

So next time someone tells you that their house was robbed, you can say, “I hope it didn’t put up a fight and just handed over its wallet.”

10 Security Threats that Scare Homeowners

Home ownership is something many American’s take for granted and for others is just a dream. What some don’t realize is that owning a home comes with a whole new set of responsibilities and problems. This is why homeowner insurance is so important and required by mortgage holders. Here are 10 of the security threats that scare homeowners. 

  1. Burglary – The first thing that comes to mind when mentioning security threats is burglary. The risk of being robbed is higher in some areas than others, but even in low risk areas, the threat is there. Many homeowners invest in security systems to prevent break-ins.
  2. Fire – The biggest threat to any homeowner is fire. Even if a fire is caught and put out, the damage to the home and its contents is devastating. Nothing can prepare you for the overwhelming loss of your home and possessions to a house fire. Smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and even sprinkler systems can be purchased to help prevent fires from consuming your home.
  3. Floods – The threat of flooding is so prevalent in most of the county that there is a national flood insurance program provided by the federal government. Since some areas only flood about every 100 years, people can live in an area for generations without knowing they have a threat. Water damage in a home is very expensive and difficult to repair.
  4. Earthquakes – Another natural disaster that threatens homeowner’s security is earthquakes. Although more prevalent in fault zones, earthquakes can happen just about anywhere and cause extensive damage to homes. People who live in high risk areas must follow special building codes to help their homes withstand minor earthquakes.
  5. Storms – Homeowners always keep a close eye on weather conditions. Hurricanes and tornadoes can cause the most devastating damage, but even a strong thunderstorm can be a major threat. Strong winds and lightening can do quite a bit of damage to your home and cause power outages.
  6. Lawsuits – Unfortunately, another big threat to a homeowner’s security is lawsuits. Anyone who injures themselves while on your property can sue for damages even if the accident was entirely their fault. People who don’t have insurance to cover awarded damages are at risk of losing their homes.
  7. Unemployment – Most people have mortgage payments that consume a large part of their monthly income. If they lose their job or are unable to work because of illness or injury, they may not be able to keep up the payments and risk defaulting on their loans.
  8. Identity theft – Another security threat that scares homeowners is identity theft. If not discovered quickly, a person’s credit can be destroyed and huge credit card bills can be racked up. Some may be forced to sell their homes to cover the costs and be unable to purchase another because of their bad credit rating.
  9. Vandalism – Something that many homeowners don’t anticipate is the threat of vandalism. Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous people who don’t have any respect for other people’s property. A broken window may be covered by the insurance, but is still a big headache to repair.
  10. Winter – People who live in cold climates need to be concerned about damage to their homes in the winter. Sub-freezing temperatures can cause plumbing pipes to freeze and heavy snows can collapse a roof. If a homeowner goes on vacation to escape the cold weather, they need to make sure the furnace doesn’t quit and let their house freeze up.

Homeowner insurance doesn’t cover all of these security threats, but can help defray the cost of most of them. It’s important to know the degree of risk for any of these threats in your particular circumstances. Home ownership can be somewhat scary, especially in today’s uncertain economic situation. Know what the threats are and take steps to prevent them to make owning your home less risky and more secure.

10 Essential Elements of a Home Fire Escape Plan

We all know, if we let ourselves think about it, that a fire in our home is possible and can be deadly, but what have we done to prepare for it? Here are 10 elements that are essential, when it comes to getting your family out of your home safely in the event of a home fire.

  1. Smoke Alarms. There should be a smoke alarm in each sleeping area of your home, and one in the area just outside the sleeping rooms, as well as having smoke alarms on each level of the home. There should also be smoke alarms in the stairways between levels, and one in any room that is regularly closed off while being used, such as an office or media room. Smoke alarms should be tested once per month to assure that their batteries are good. Direct-wired alarms are not recommended, as an electrical fire can render them useless.
  2. Floor Plan. Take the time to create a floor plan, map, or grid of your home. Study it together as a family, so that everyone knows escape routes from each room in case a fire separates family members.
  3. Clear Escape Routes. Make sure that all escape routes to windows and doors are free of blockages at all times.
  4. Alternate Route Plans. Your escape plan should include two routes out of each room, in order to assure that no one is trapped if a fire blocks a primary exit.
  5. Outside Meeting Place. Designate a meeting place outside the home, for everyone to gather after escaping the home.
  6. Practice. Assemble your family once per month to practice your escape plan. Keeping the practices short, and assuming the fire starts in a different room for each practice, on a rotating basis from month to month, is a good idea.
  7. Hot Doors. The plan should stress that a hot door should never be opened during a fire event. Hot doors mean fire is on the other side.
  8. Once Out, Stay Out. Once you or a family member has escaped the home, it should never be re-entered. Gather in your outside meeting place, and if anyone is missing, one member can run around the outside of the house, pounding on walls and shouting to get the attention of anyone left inside.
  9. No Elevators. If you live in a multi-story building, never use elevators in order to escape during a fire event. Elevators are a trap if the power is lost.
  10. Sleepovers. If your child asks to stay overnight at a friend’s house, always speak to the parents of the friend, to assure yourself that they also have smoke alarms and an escape plan, before giving answer. Also, the parents should be willing to include your child in an escape practice before the sleepover proceeds. The same, of course, should be done when your child has a friend in your home for an overnight stay.

These 10 essentials make a good guideline in order to assure the safety of your family in others during a home fire event. In creating your plan, you will likely find others that are essential to the peculiarities of your home. Be prepared and be safe.   

7 Really Stupid Home Burglary Stories

Having your home burglarized is no laughing matter, but occasionally, the antics of ‘not so smart’ burglars are worth a few chuckles, especially when it ends up with them being caught. We’ve put together a list of seven of the stupidest burglar stories we could find. 

  1. Sleeping on the Job.  According to this CBS news story, this Malaysian home burglar broke into a residence while the owners were away from home for the evening. Like Goldilocks in the home of the three bears, he decided to take a little nap before leaving the home with his goods. When the homeowners returned in the morning, they found him still asleep in the house and called the authorities before he woke up. He should get plenty of sleep time in his new accommodations.
  2. Guess Who’s Coming for Dinner? This report from the Salt Lake City Tribune tells the tale of a burglar who forgot to eat before going on his nightly raid. The burglar helped himself to a couple of cans of soup while he was in the home. That may not seem so stupid, except that he obviously wasn’t as careful about handling the soup can’s as he was about other areas of the home. The police were able to identify him by the fingerprint he left on one of the soup cans he left behind.
  3. Facebook Folly I Even in a big city like Washington D.C., posting your own picture on the facebook page of your victim while you are committing the crime is a pretty foolish thing to do. The burglar posted the picture while in the home and showing off the cash and coat that he was stealing. Because the police had his photo, they were able to quickly link him to the crime when they picked him up for unrelated reasons a few weeks later.
  4. Facebook Folly II  - This one was in Pennsylvania. Instead of posting his picture on the victim’s facebook page, this foolish crook logged on to his own facebook account from the victims computer. If the burglar had stolen the computer, he might not have been caught. Instead, he stole two diamond rings and left the computer with his facebook account still open on the it. The victim discovered the open facebook account of a stranger on her computer and shared it with law enforcement when she reported the burglary. He was quickly identified and had to change his status to ‘incarcerated’.
  5. From Ashes to …Cocaine?  In this CNN report from Florida, burglars took jewelry, electronics and the cremated remains of the victims father and two dogs. It was later learned that the burglars took the ashes assuming that the powder was cocaine and had actually snorted some of it before finding out what it was they had actually stolen.
  6. Charged with Unauthorized ‘Charging’ Cellphones have been another cause of stupid burglars being foiled in their attempts to escape the law. In this case in the burglar found that his cellphone battery was running low and ‘luckily?’ had brought his phone charger with him. He plugged his charger in and attached his cellphone. In his hurry to leave when the occupants returned, he left the cellphone and charger behind, leading to his arrest.
  7. Moonlighting with the Company Vehicle A technology gadget foiled this crafty burglar. He did his burglary work while driving a company owned vehicle. Apparently unaware that the vehicle had a GPS tracking device installed under the hood, the burglar was caught when a neighbor mentioned seeing the tow truck he was driving in the neighborhood the day of the burglary.

Thankfully, the police were able to apprehend these burglars with a little help from their own ineptness. Not all burglars are this stupid. So keep your home secure. You never know when you might be the next victim.

10 Ways People Get Locked Out of Their House

I’m pretty sure that everyone has been locked out of their house at least once. Some people have taken it to the extreme and had multiple keys made to either hide or give to someone else because they get locked out so often. Listed below you will find ten ways people get locked out of their house.

  1. Getting the mail/newspaper. You walk out the door to get the mail thinking that you left the door unlocked, or you leave it open and it shuts on you. Hopefully, you remembered to get dressed and are not standing out there in your fuzzy slippers and robe.
  2. Starting the car. For those of us that live in the extreme cold or even hot it has become a custom to go out to start the car to get it to warm up or cool off depending on the weather. However, not all of us keep our house keys and car keys on the same key chain, and you could easily get locked out of the house if you left the house keys inside.
  3. Letting the dog out. Whether you are standing on the porch waiting for Fido to do his business ,or hooking him up to a chain, this is another easy way to get locked out of the house.
  4. Watering the grass/flowers. Another simple but easy way to get locked out. Most of us do not carry our keys at all times, and stepping out to water you lawn is another way to accidentally lock yourself out of the house.
  5. Going for a walk/run. It can be a habit to lock your door on the way out, without even realizing you did it. When you’re wearing your sweats, and don’t have any pockets, it can be easy to do this without having any keys on your person.
  6. Locking keys in the car. This is a popular one. If you keep your house keys on the same key chain as your car keys and then lock your keys in the car you are subsequently locked out of your house as well.
  7. Losing keys while not at home. Have you ever had that panicked moment while in a restaurant or at a friend’s house when you couldn’t find your keys? Not only do you have to find a ride, but possibly a place to sleep as well.
  8. Having a lock that opens from inside when locked. I’m not sure about you, but I think this was one of the worst inventions ever. Even though the door is locked you can still open it from the inside. Once you step out and close the door, you are locked out.
  9. Thinking you left it unlocked. As mentioned above, locking the door becomes a habit and you can do it without even realizing it. A lot of people get locked out of their house simply because they thought they left it unlocked, and didn’t need their keys. Or maybe you are leaving in a group and someone else locks the door when you planned on leaving it open.
  10. Someone changed the locks. This is by far the worst way of getting locked out of the house. You get into a fight with your significant other, or maybe even your parents, and they change the locks. The problem with this one is you probably won’t get back in without some serious groveling.

Locking yourself out of the house is no fun and having someone else lock you out is even worse. After reading the list of ten ways people lock themselves out of the house hopefully you won’t feel as bad knowing others do it too and may share in some of the common pitfalls as well.