Living alone can be wonderful. You can keep your own schedule without worrying that you're inconveniencing anyone, decorate exactly how you like, and even watch movies in your underwear on a lazy Sunday (hey, no judging). But while living alone is liberating, it's also important to be mindful of your personal safety, especially as a woman. Here are five ways to help secure your safety while enjoying your own place:
Install a Security System
A good home security system will provide you with immense peace of mind. An armed system means that if someone attempts to break into your home, an alarm will sound, most likely scaring the potential intruders away. It will also connect to local authorities, meaning even if you're not home the police will be called if someone tries to break in. These days, security systems can usually be monitored remotely, from your smart phone or laptop. This means you'll be able to check on the security of your home even if you're at work or on vacation.
Have Locks Changed When You Move In
When you first move into a new place and receive the keys, it might not occur to you that other people who've previously lived in or had access to your home may also have keys. It's hard to feel totally secure in your home when strangers you don't know, who may not all have good intentions, have their own keys.
Just to be safe, it always makes sense to have the locks changed as soon as you move in. If you're renting, be sure to run this by your landlord first, especially since they will need a key for the new locks. Once you bring it up, your landlord may even offer to pay to have the locks changed, as this protects their property as well as keeping their tenant (you) safer.
Avoid Bringing Dates Home
That guy you just met might seem awesome, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Until you really get to know someone, avoid inviting them over or even letting them know exactly where you live, just in case. It might also be a good idea to let a close friend know when you go out on dates, perhaps texting them with where you will be and the guy's name. Here are some additional safety tips that particularly pertain to first date safety.
The right guy will understand your caution and respect your commitment to protecting yourself. When you do finally invite him over, after getting to know and trust each other, you'll be able to do so without anxiety.
Secure Windows and Sliding Glass Doors
Be sure to get in the habit of locking all windows, especially when you leave or go to bed at night. If you have a sliding glass door, get a metal pole or stick that can be wedged into the bottom of the door, making it nearly impossible to break in. Most would-be-thieves will be deterred by hard or impossible to break into windows and sliding glass doors, since they won't likely want to attract attention by breaking the glass.
Install Motion-Detecting Outdoor Lights
With motion-detecting lights, the moment a would-be intruder steps close to your house bright outdoor lights will come on. This serves two purposes: it alerts you to the presence of a potential intruder, and it will likely scare anyone with bad intentions away from your home, since breaking into a brightly-lit house is too risky.
These five tips should help you to enjoy living alone with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you're safe and secure.