Did you know that nine percent of burglars break into homes through the basement? If you’re like most people and keep a lot of valuable items in your basement, you could be inadvertently making those belongings vulnerable to theft!
In addition to the risk of theft, you could also be making your valuable items vulnerable to other types of damage. Basements (and the items stored in them) are often subject to water damage, insect damage, and other serious issues.
If you need help securing your basement (from any kind of problem) and making it safe for valuables, follow these tips today.
1. Make Your Windows Visible
A good first step toward keeping your basement and your valuables safe from burglars is to make sure your windows are visible.
Many people have bushes or flowers growing in front of their basement windows. This may look nice from the outside, but it makes it harder for people walking or driving by to notice if someone is in your home who shouldn’t be there.
You don’t have to rip out your flowers and bushes altogether. Consider trimming them down, though, so that your windows are still at least somewhat visible.
2. Use an Alarm System
You may have an alarm system, but it’s common for people to neglect putting sensors or cameras in their basement.
Folks often assume that they only need to worry about protecting the main and upper levels of their homes. Remember, though, burglars can get in through any part of your home, including the basement.
If you have valuables stored down there, it’s especially important that you take additional steps to seal the area and catch a burglar before they can take something from you.
3. Store Your Valuables Appropriately
If you keep valuable items in your basement, make sure you store them in ways that are effective and appropriate.
For example, keep boxes of easily damaged items like pictures or flash drives that contain pictures on high shelves. That way, if your basement floods, they’ll be less likely to sustain water damage.
If you have expensive or potentially dangerous items (such as firearms) in your basement, make sure they’re in locked containers that only you and your partner can open.
Taking steps like this can work wonders when it comes to protecting your belongings from all kinds of threats.
4. Use Motion Sensor Lights
In addition to an alarm system, you may want to install motion sensor lights in your basement and around your home. That way, if an intruder is lurking about, they’ll trigger the lights and may alert your neighbors that something fishy is going on.
Outdoor motion sensor lights, in particular, can be helpful. Even though they don’t protect your basement in a direct way, they still help to deter burglars, which is good for you and the items you may be storing down there.
5. Prioritize Proper Plumbing
To make your basement safe for valuables, you need to make sure it’s not vulnerable to flooding.
You may not be able to prevent floods altogether, but you can certainly take steps to minimize the amount of damage they can cause. One way to do this is to ensure the plumbing in your home is up to snuff.
Start by investing in a high-quality sump pump. Check on a regular basis, too, to see if it’s working properly.
Make sure you have a backup power supply in your home as well. If you don’t, your sump pump won’t be able to do its job in an effective way.
6. Clean Rain Gutters and Downspouts
Failure to clean your rain gutters and downspouts could lead to basement flooding, water damage, and damaged valuables.
Make sure you clean your gutters and downspouts on a regular basis (at least twice a year). Check them every few months, too, to make sure they’re not getting too clogged in between cleanings.
7. Seal Your Windows
Don’t forget to seal the windows well in your basement, too. If your windows are draft and let in cold air and moisture, you could damage your belongings without even realizing it (until it’s too late, that is).
You may even want to consider replacing your windows altogether. This can be especially helpful if you live in an older home that hasn’t had new windows in a long time.
8. Keep Crawl Spaces Clear
Remember to focus on controlling crawl space moisture, too. You may think your basement and your belongings are safe if you’ve taken the other precautions on this list.
If you’ve neglected the crawl spaces in your home, though, you could end up with water damage, mold, and other problems that damage or even destroy your most valuable belongings.
Be sure to check on these areas on a regular basis so you can catch problems early. Look for signs of water damage or indicators that water damage could become an issue (such as unsealed cracks) and address them as soon as you can.
9. Prevent Pest Infestations
Pests like rodents, moths, and termites can cause serious damage to your belongings if they get into your basement (or any part of your home, for that matter).
Keeping your home dry and well-sealed can work wonders at keeping pests away. Storing belongings in air-tight containers will also help to prevent damage should pests find their way in.
You may want to have your home sprayed once or twice a year as an extra precaution as well, particularly if you’ve had problems with pests in the past.
Make Your Basement Safe for Valuables Today
As you can see, there are lots of steps you can take to ensure your basement is safe for valuables.
At first, some of these practices might seem a bit excessive. If you invest the time and funds to put them into action today, though, your hard work will definitely pay off later on.
Do you want to learn more about securing your home and keeping your belongings in good condition?
If so, check out some of the storage tips and tricks on our site today. You’ll find lots of great advice when you read through our articles.
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