Aging in place is no longer just a dream, but actually reality for most seniors.
Often family caregivers support their senior loved ones’ ability to age in place.
Safety is often a worry, especially for long distance caregivers. Not just seniors’ safety inside the home, but safety from those accessing their homes who might wish them harm.
Did you know that a home burglary occurs every 15 seconds — or more often! (Safewise.com estimates a burglary happens every 13 seconds!)
Older adults are frequent targets because they usually own valuables that criminals want. They are actually the second most targeted group for burglars, behind single females.
30% of home burglaries happen when someone is home.
July and August have the most frequent number of break-ins.
Home security is a concern for family caregivers and, fortunately, there are steps to take to help our seniors be more secure while aging in place.
Senior Victim Prevention
Keeping your senior’s home secure when you can’t be there requires a few planning steps but they are all achievable.
Here is a list of some items for you to check-off to keep them safe:
- Keep the doors locked. A heavy-duty deadbolt works best. Remind your senior to keep things locked up.
- Install a wide view peephole or video door bell system so your senior can see who is out front or back.
- Insert wooden dowel or pole in sliding door tracks to secure them.
- Latch windows and install double locking systems on easily accessible windows.
- Urge your senior to become friendly with the neighbors, watch each other’s homes. Remind them to call 9-1-1 to report any suspicious neighborhood activity.
- Keep newspapers, deliveries and mail picked up, put trash out on trash day, and return empty cans to house promptly
- Secure adequate lighting around all sides of the home’s exterior. Motion detector lights can scare away would-be burglars.
- Because only 17% of homes in the US have security systems and burglars violate homes without security systems 300% more often than those with a system, installing a home security system may be beneficial.
- Don’t keep a ladder, garden tools or spare key on the outside for use by a burglar.
- Clear dense shrubs from around house that may inadvertently hide burglars as they enter.
- Ask local law enforcement to conduct a home inspection to highlight any areas of concern that need improvement.
- Use a personal emergency alert system that can be activated, not just in personal emergencies but also for security breaches.
Here are a few more articles that family caregivers might find helpful to keep their senior loved ones safe.