Gated Communities and Security Systems
While a large gate may serve as a deterrent for burglars, it can also entice them. Are gated communities safe without additional security systems installed in homes? As Robert Siciliano, of the Huffington Post, suggests, "That stylish gate is more of an ornament than a crime deterrent. It may very well be a lure to thieves, since it suggests that there's a lot of valuables in those houses. The gate may even suggest complacence with tougher security measures among the homeowners."
Multiple statistics and studies show that having a gate has little effect on lowering crime in gated communities, and only slightly alters the crime rate. The largest difference between gated and un-gated communities appears to be the perception of feeling safer. A gate lends itself to the feeling of false security by residents in those communities.
In his post, Siciliano also suggests that gates may work to keep outside criminals from driving through the gates, but they may not stop them from walking into the neighborhood as someone else drives through the gate. Additionally, gate codes are given out to a multitude of individuals such as family, friends, professional services, among others. Having a static gate code can be music to a burglar's ears if they are scoping out the community. If a potential burglar gains access to the gate code and it never changes, it could result in repeat visits to the neighborhood.
Question..."How well do you know your neighbors?" The fact is that no one truly knows who lives next door, in a gated community or not. If your neighbor is less than on the up-and-up, the gate will be pointless. In fact, it could, in some instances, even hinder the police response time.
Do not become complacent and end up a victim of crime due to the false security of a gated community. Home security starts at home. To minimize your risk of theft, make sure you lock all of your doors and windows during the day when you are at work, at night and while you are on vacation. Be very cautious when choosing a neighbor to "watch over" your home while you are away.
Additionally, during the school year, having a secure home is extremely important if your children spend time at home alone after school. Make sure your children are safe while home alone. Remember, a gated community may offer a sense of safety for your children, but, it may not always be enough.
The most effective way to protect your family and your assets is to add a higher-level layer of security and have a professionally installed security system added to your home with connections to police, fire and ambulance services. Consider security systems that have remote access. With remote access, you have the capability to control the lights and many other features of your home. You may also want to install video cameras with remote access so that you can monitor and/or interact with visitors at your door, even while you're away at work or on vacation.
Home security systems, more often than not, deter crime. Burglars are also deterred by security signs in the yard and lighting controlled either at home or by remote. Burglars may pass over your home, but they will, undoubtedly, continue to search your neighborhood until they find a less secure, more inviting home, with or without an iron gate as the entry point.