"Lights, camera, action!" is the new buzz phrase in home security. Everyone is putting electronic cameras on entrances to keep an eye out for suspicious activity, and you can, too.
Home Security Cameras
There are a couple strategies you should employ when equipping your home with security cameras. You can take the direct approach by installing large, wired cameras at your home's entry points. One nice thing about being obvious is that any potential miscreant will realize he's being monitored and may leave the premises. If he does hang around, a wired system will give you a nice, crisp picture to show the police later. Wired cameras in multiple locations on your property can be tricky to install, so this is one option you may want to have professionally designed and fitted.
Wireless cameras have become very popular in recent years. They're small and easy to conceal, and being hard to spot makes them more likely to catch the bad guys heading out the back door with your flat screen. Even though they're and easy to hide, wireless camera solutions have a couple of drawbacks you should think about. The photo quality can be questionable, especially if there are other electronic signals flying around and creating interference. Wireless camera feeds can also be intercepted by others, making the view of your front porch, driveway, patio or family room a lot more public than you'd probably like. Still, they're easy to install and operate, and prices for basic systems are coming down all the time.
The idea that being recorded works as a natural deterrent to criminals has led to a whole line of products that are actually just empty camera housings. They look intimidating but don't do much else. This option is less expensive than buying a real camera, but it's a lot less effective at nabbing the crooks if you do become a victim. Take a pass on these unless you're a great poker player who specializes in bluffing.
Adding outdoor lighting is a simple, inexpensive and common sense home security alternative. Crooks don't want to be spotted by you, your neighbors or passersby, and anything you can do to make them more visible will help reduce your risk of being robbed or worse. Although you may want to install some solar options, large, wired spotlights near your entrances and along walkways that receive the most foot traffic are the best spots for additional illumination. While you're at it, cut back the shrubbery around your entrances, too. It will give potential home invaders fewer places to hide.