When building a home, you have the rare opportunity to integrate high-level security elements into the design from day one. From the outside walking in, let's discuss the security measures you can build into your dream house.

1. Guard the Exterior

There are elements of a home's exterior that are more vulnerable for burglary. Plan the outside of your home to deter intruders with these tips:

  • Create a Barrier: Fences and gates are a great way to create both a mental and physical impediment for potential intruders. As you pick out fencing, keep in mind that height plays a big role in the level of security offered. High fences actually shield the intruder as they approach your home; whereas shorter fences create a barrier while keeping visibility intact.
  • Optimize Landscaping: Intruders look for homes with easy entry points and access. Strategically place plants and shrubbery to thwart intruders and add an extra layer of defense. Thorn bushes can act as nature's barbed wire. Selecting shrubbery is similar to picking out fences in that tall bushes do the opposite of your intent. Plant shrubs low enough that they can’t serve as hiding places.
  • Shed Some Light: Intruders want to get in and out without being seen. When building the plans for your new home, be sure to incorporate outdoor lighting. In addition to timed and manual lights, consider security lights that activate based on motion. They act as early alarms and will often scare intruders.

2. Secure Potential Entryways

Most doorway purchases are based on style, curb appeal and energy efficiency, but another feature you should look for is durability. All doors should be thick and resilient to prevent someone from entering.

Other common entry points are windows, basements and crawl spaces. To protect yourself, install reinforced windows and invest in keyed locks. Basic thumb locks that twist closed on windows are susceptible to forceful entry.

3. Strategically Plan Your Home's Interior

When designing your floor plan, keep safety in mind. Install concealed storage solutions for expensive items and gadgets. While television armoires may not be your style, they do a great job of keeping your expensive items neatly obscured and out of eyesight.

Finally, install a video surveillance solution, and gain peace of mind that your home is safe even when you are not there.

Image Source: Lindsey Turner via Flickr