Improve home security with fences

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According to survey results from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), break-ins were the most common household crime from 1993-2005i. And as mentioned in our tips to secure your home against theft article, the ABS also estimates that in the year prior to its Crime Victimisation Survey 2009-10, 254,500 households were the victims of at least one break-in to their home, garage or shed and 203,700 households were victims of an attempted break-in. To deter burglars it is worth considering the erection of secure boundary fences around your property.

With a variety of fences and gates to choose from, you can achieve privacy and home security without compromising the character and feel of a welcoming home. Below are some helpful tips to help you select a suitable fence to work alongside your home insurance for a safer and financially secured household . In addition to reading the tips below, we recommend that you seek the advice of a fence or security specialist.

onsider property fences for home security.

How high should your fence be?

Although there is no such thing as a perfect height for a home fence, you should erect one that keeps potential intruders out without necessarily making your house resemble a high security prison. A fence at ankle-height will merely outline your property, be easy to climb over and may not offer adequate security for your property. On the flip side, a fence that is too high can block out sunlight and leave home residents feeling claustrophobic.

Additionally, you should also be aware that there are regulations on how and where a fence can be erected. If you are erecting a fence on the boundary between adjoining properties - of your neighbour's and your land - make sure you get a survey done to confirm the official boundaries. Depending on what type of fence you are building, the fence may be required to be built on the proposer's property. Make sure you check with your local council and relevant authorities for the laws regulating fences before erecting one around your house.

Fence Material

The material from which you build your fence may not only determine its look and character but may also lay foundation for its durability and security. Ultimately, your fence should complement the aesthetic of your home without compromising its security function. Construction materials for fences vary and include wood, aluminium, brick, stone, vinyl or steel wire. In selecting a material, bear in mind how much you're willing to spend, the durability and strength you're after, whether it's high or low maintenance and how easy (or difficult) it's going to be to put up.

Locking gates can increase security

If your fence is built in such a way that you have a fence gate, as with all other points of entry, make sure your gate is secured by a lock. Your fence may or may not be suited to standard locks for exterior doors and you should consult a professional in the event of confusion.

Remember to lock all entry points including your fence gate.

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i Australian Institute of Criminology, 2007, Australian crime: facts and figures 2006,