Your home is your sanctuary, and you want to ensure it’s well-protected. That protection, however, can be amplified with community effort. Vigilant neighbors, coupled with home security systems, can create reliable surveillance that protects the entire neighborhood and keeps crime at bay. Here, we’ll discuss how outdoor cameras, lighting, signage and more can enhance home security and community watch efforts.
What are neighborhood watch programs?
Neighborhood watch programs are a community effort to reduce crime and ensure the safety of all neighbors. Regardless of how many police patrols canvas a neighborhood on a daily basis, law enforcement cannot constantly be present. This is where a community watch comes in to fill the gaps. With approximately 28,000 community watch programs in the United States alone, studies have shown that areas with these programs have lower crime rates than those without.
Strategies and Systems Utilized by Neighborhood Watch Programs
Neighborhood watch programs will usually have a committee to organize activities and initiatives. They are also responsible for creating strategies on how to implement the program. A typical strategy will include:
Outdoor cameras are one of the most valuable security tools for neighborhood watch programs. These outdoor surveillance systems provide a real-time, 24/7 view of the area and can be used to deter crime, identify potential threats, and catch criminals in the act.
Outdoor cameras also help reassure neighbors that their community is well monitored and protected. A visible outdoor surveillance system (i.e., outdoor camera with accompanying signs) indicates that the area is securely monitored and may deter criminals that case the neighborhood. And if a crime does occur, outdoor cameras can provide valuable evidence to help authorities catch and prosecute perpetrators.
In addition to outdoor cameras, outdoor lighting can also help discourage criminals. Outdoor lighting improves visibility for outdoor camera systems so they can capture footage more clearly. Furthermore, depending on the type of lighting system installed by the homeowner, lights can be placed on timers and motion sensors to give the illusion a home is occupied.
While some may see them as an unnecessary detail, security system signage can also enhance home protection. By placing signage in the yard, homeowners can signal that the property is monitored 24/7, making a thief think twice about breaking in.
Being a Good Neighbor
Another way neighborhood watch programs combat crime is by being a good neighbor. For example, when a homeowner is away, trusted neighbors can boost security by taking in mail or parking cars in the absent homeowner’s driveway to make it seem like someone is home. Occupied homes, or homes that seem like they are occupied, are less likely to become targets of theft than houses that appear vacant.
The Bottom Line
Neighborhood watch programs can be a powerful deterrent when it comes to crime prevention. Even if you don’t live in a community with an established watch program, outdoor cameras, lighting, and signage are still effective ways to boost your home security and keep watch over your block.