Recent studies have shown that up to 80% of burglaries use the backyard as the first access point. As a security installer, I have seen this happen again and again.
Without securing your backyard, you’re inviting a whole subset of issues, from wild animals to robberies. Today, I will bring you some tips and ideas to help you secure your yard and feel safer at home.
Let’s get started with some of my top tips for securing your home’s backyard.
1. Tall Backyard Fences
Tall fences are good for fending off wild animals, and according to studies, intruders get discouraged from robbing a house with tall walls because it takes time to climb them, risking the burglar being seen. However, fences can only be as tall as 4 to 6 feet, as the law requires.
Here are a few tips for choosing and installing the right tall fence.
- Choose the right materials: Opt for materials that are sturdy and durable, such as wood, vinyl, or metal.
- Consider local regulations: Before installing a fence, check local zoning laws and homeowner association regulations to ensure your fence meets requirements.
- Invest in professional installation: Hiring a professional contractor can ensure that the fence is installed correctly, with a level and sturdy foundation.
- Utilize height-increasing design elements: Features such as latticework or trellis can be added to the top of a fence to increase its height.
- Consider privacy solutions: Adding privacy screens or plants can enhance privacy and visually increase your fence’s height.
- Reinforce fence posts: Tall fences may require additional support, such as concrete reinforcement for fence posts.
If you think they are not high enough to deter burglars, you could add one or two more options below.
2. Barbed Wire Fences
One of the common ways to keep out thieves that climb fences is to add barbed wire on top.
The best-barbed wire to add on top of a wall is galvanized barbed wire. It offers corrosion resistance and durability, making it suitable for outdoor use. Additionally, galvanized barbed wire is readily available and easy to install, making it a practical choice for adding security to a wall.
Barbed cables are not very attractive if you want to keep your yard elegant and can offend neighbors.
3. Broken Glass On Top Of the Fence
Like barbed wires, broken glass will deter criminals from attempting to climb your fences. While intruders may smash the glass or put some form of clothing like a sweater over it, it is efficient protection if you add them to a high wall.
The legality of putting broken glass on top of a wall to fend off robbers varies by jurisdiction. In some countries and states, it may be considered a form of physical harm and is, therefore, illegal. In others, it may be allowed under specific circumstances, such as in prison.
This practice can pose a risk of harm to anyone who tries to climb over the wall, including innocent individuals.
4. Fence Spikes
Apart from barbed wires and broken glass fences, an alternative option is fence spikes. This option is far more attractive since it has a different, more uniform appearance. And you could add paint to it because the materials consist of metals.
The legality of fence spikes varies by jurisdiction. In some countries and states, fence spikes are considered a form of physical harm and, therefore, illegal. In others, they may be allowed under specific circumstances.
Here are some of the best types.
- Cast iron spikes are durable and long lasting, making them popular for security fencing. They can be used on metal or wooden fences and come in various shapes and sizes.
- Stainless steel spikes: Stainless steel spikes are resistant to rust and corrosion, making them suitable for outdoor use. They are often used on metal or aluminum fences.
- Plastic spikes: Plastic spikes are a lightweight and cost-effective option for adding spikes to a fence. They can be used on wooden or vinyl fences and come in various colors.
- Razor wire: Razor wire is a type of concertina wire made of thin, sharp blades. It is often used on high-security fences surrounding prisons, military installations, and commercial properties.
5. Adding a Backyard Alarm System
Installing an alarm system is an excellent method to deter burglars from breaking into your backyard.
Many types are great for your backyard, including:
- Motion sensor alarms use infrared technology to detect movement and trigger an alarm. They are easy to install and can protect a specific area, such as a garden or patio.
- Wireless alarms: Wireless alarms use a network of sensors and a control panel to provide comprehensive property coverage. They are easy to install and can be linked to a smartphone or other device for remote monitoring.
- Video surveillance systems(well cover this in detail below): Video surveillance systems use cameras and a recording device to capture video footage of a property. They can be used to deter intruders and provide evidence during a break-in.
- Loud siren alarms: Loud siren alarms emit a loud, audible alarm when triggered. They can scare off intruders and alert neighbors to a potential break-in.
6. Installing a Backyard Surveillance Camera
You can install security cameras and point them to your backyard area. When protecting your belongings from robbery, outdoor security cameras can be valuable.
Consider purchasing security cameras with night vision, motion detection, and weatherproofing, as this gives you a security advantage. Ensure your cameras are visible to potential criminals and high enough that a burglar can’t reach them to disconnect or tamper with them.
We have entire articles on the installation, but some good tips include:
- Choose the right location for a clear view of important areas.
- Mount cameras securely to a solid surface.
- Ensure cameras are near power and have a strong internet connection.
- Use weatherproof cameras for outdoor use.
- Set up remote viewing and recording.
- Test cameras for proper function.
- Store footage securely to prevent unauthorized access.
- Check local laws on backyard surveillance cameras.
7. Install Motion Sensor Lights
Another effective burglar deterrent is to install of motion sensor lights. A bright light will illuminate the space when someone walks inside the motion sensor range.
Many homeowners and businesses report that motion sensor lights have successfully deterred intruders and improved their property security. In some cases, the mere presence of motion sensor lights has been enough to deter would-be intruders.
Moreover, as long as they’re not too close to the camera and facing the lens from the front, any lights will improve your camera’s night vision. Installing motion sensor floodlights behind the camera is the best option. It can increase the camera’s image quality in infrared mode, allowing for better facial images and recognition of other details.
8. Use Security Stickers and Yard Signs
There is no universally applicable statistic for the effectiveness of security stickers, as the results can vary greatly depending on the specific situation. In some cases, security stickers may be an effective means of deterring intruders, while in others, they may not have much impact.
Make them stand out as much as possible. Please install your outdoor cameras in walkways, doors, and sheds.
Even if you don’t have an alarm system, consider putting up some security signs in your yard to give robbers the impression that you have them. Place security signs near any gates or entrances leading into your yard.
9. Consider Getting a Dog
Dogs help keep burglars and intruders away from your home. Overall, the greater the dog’s size, the more effective the deterrence is. According to statistics, huge dogs discourage burglars, and the bigger the dog, the less likely a robber will attempt a break-in. (1)
Here is a list of the best dog breeds for a guard dog; choose the one you feel connected with!
- German Shepherd
- Doberman Pinscher
- Belgian Malinois
- Siberian Husky
- Great Dane
10. Grow Thorny Plants
Thorny plants and flowers at important access points may appear simple, but they can effectively deter intruders. Because they can cause pain when crossing, holly bushes are a fantastic example of a prospective perimeter plant. Planting them beneath windows and around fences is an excellent example of strategic placement.
List of Best Perimeter Thorny Plants to Secure Your Backyard:
- Rose bushes
- Barberry bushes
- Holly bushes
- Blackberry bushes
Burglars tend to hide behind whatever is available when entering a backyard. Keeping your yard groomed and having more open space can be essential for a security strategy. So if you want a few shrubs surrounding your property, make sure they’re well-placed so criminals can’t hide in them. (2)
12. Invest in Gate Latch
One of the safety tips we want to give you is having a gate latch. These mechanisms allow homeowners to move easily past the fence while keeping it closed.
The most basic types have a hole through which the user can slide a padlock to secure the bolt. Gate latch features combinations to unlock them from the outside.
13. Secure Your Valuables
If you leave tools lying around in the backyard, criminals can use them to break into your house.
It would be best to store your tools in a locked garage or a secure, “pick-proof” shed. It would be best if you also secured your patio chairs and tables with chains or padlocks. This is to prevent burglars from using your patio chairs and table for entry.
Make sure you chain or padlock your ladder if you leave them outside. A burglar can access your second-story windows with a ladder. Therefore, hide your ladders in a less accessible area, such as in a shed, attic, or basement.
Examine anything a possible robber could use to gain access to your property as you analyze your backyard security. Moreover, having tools and other valuables in the house signals to a burglar that the house could be an easy target. Give no motivation or tools for a criminal.
14. Keep Your Backyard Lit Up
A well-lit area serves as an instant deterrence to burglars. The more light in your backyard, the more likely you catch a thief in action.
You might consider putting up numerous lights around your property if you have a large backyard. Outdoor lighting’s goal is to eliminate blind spots and give complete coverage.
You can use motion sensor lighting to add extra protection to your garden or backyard area. The light turns on when it detects motion and stays on for 1 to 20 seconds, depending on the selected timer. Unless it detects motion, the light will automatically turn off.
You may also install sensor lights outside paths leading to a door. You can angle these lights at decks, patio areas, or stairwells.
Install sensor lights at every entryway to your house or property to add more backyard safety. It would be best to place your motion sensor lights around 6 to 10 feet above the ground.
15. Secure Your Shed
Backyard sheds are gold mines for criminals seeking a quick score like power tools and equipment.
It would be best if you protected your belongings inside and used a heavy-duty padlock to secure your shed. You may want to implement extra security measures, such as outdoor security cameras around your shed.
There are other ways to secure your shed; you can install a strong deadbolt lock to prevent most burglaries.
It’s also a good idea to photograph any valuable items in your backyard, such as your grills, decorative items, toys, fire pits, and anything else that a thief might steal. The images will serve as proof if something needs to be retrieved by insurance.
16. Use a Steel Cable to Lock your Valuables
You can purchase a steel cable in almost any hardware store to safeguard your more expensive goods like large grills. These cables are inexpensive, simple to use, and efficient.
Run the cable through the bases of numerous pieces of furniture or items and secure it with a padlock. This criminal deterrent connects all your backyard goods into a single strong connection, making it difficult for would-be burglars to take them.
17. Use Indoor Storage
As the saying goes, out of sight, out of mind. If you are not using your patio set, you may secure it from theft and harsh weather by putting it inside.
This doesn’t mean you should move your complete outdoor dining set to protected storage after every family barbecue, but you should do so during the chilly winter months. This will reduce the possibility of your outdoor items being stolen and help maintain your furniture in excellent shape for years to come.
When patio furniture is kept outside for an extended time, the fabric colors fade, rust accumulates, mildew grows, cracks appear, and other issues arise. Moving your patio furniture indoors may seem inconvenient, but the long-term quality will be well worth the effort.
Whatever you choose, keep an eye on some of the basics we have covered in this guide. Though security cameras are great, you probably need more in prevention. If you have any questions feel free to ask us, and we will try to help the best we can.
(1) getting a dog – https://www.readersdigest.ca/home-garden/pets/10-things-you-need-know-getting-dog/
(2) landscaping – https://www.thespruce.com/what-is-landscaping-2130991
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