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General

How to Protect Your Neighborhood

The Housing Hour June 2, 2015


Background

This-Week-7002 How to Protect Your Neighborhood.

Crime is no longer something that happens somewhere else. Every neighborhood in the country is susceptible to crime. From car break-ins to home invasions, people have become aware of the growing concern about crime in their neighborhood. The best defense is utilizing the people in your area to become actively involved in the protection of your neighborhood.

How to Protect Your Neighborhood

Here are some simple suggestions and ideas:
1. Organize
Create a Neighborhood Watch program. Use Social Media platforms to keep people informed and engaged. There are great group text- messaging systems (like GroupMe) that will allow a Neighborhood Text Alert system to be setup with hundreds in the group. The important thing is to get to know your neighbors. People tend to be more involved when they know others personally. Everyone seems to be overly busy, so monthly meetings are not realistic; social media’s are the place that people meet these days.
2. Visual-antes (not vigilantes)
Become observant, report what you see to the police and then to the neighborhood group. The best weapon today is the cell phone, use it for pictures, videos, group texting, social media postings and police contact. DO NOT take it upon yourself to confront or follow anyone. Vigilantes are for the old Wild West, Visual-antes are the best way to fight crime in modern times. Reporting specific information to the police helps them to target their energies more efficiently.
3. Crime Maps
Use local crime maps that are updated by the local police agencies, these are typically a free online website. The Housing Hour discussed a great crime map with creator Sean Bair of Bair Analytics, RAIDSONLINE.com. Study the type and frequency of the crime that is occurring in your neighborhood. Information is the key to focusing your neighborhood group.
4. Secure Your Property
There are hundreds of security systems and methods to protect your home. Great home security is about layers. An inexpensive perimeter alarm system like the one discussed on The Housing Hour (less than $200), along with a security camera/DVR(less than $350), perhaps a monitored professional alarm system (cost varies) along with security lights that are motion activated. Of course, the absolute cheapest security system is making sure your cars and home are locked up, always! The last thing you should do at night is a security walk-through of home and property. Take away the easy pick and the bad guys go someplace else. Layer up security systems and you will catch a thief.
5. Tell Everyone
Lastly, let everyone in town know your neighborhood is watching. Tell your kids, especially your teenagers. Teenagers are a great source to spread the word. A high number of car break-in and petty thefts are from teenagers/young adults that live nearby. The whole concept is to rally your neighborhood to be proactive and less reactive. Reactive is in the past; proactive is in the present, where the bad guys are working.

By co-host
Mark Griffith

Check out our complete series:
Protect Your Family

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