Homestead Security

Posted By on November 28, 2012

Anyone who is paying attention to the present time that we live in knows that the world is heading toward a very turbulent era in human history. Personally, I try to scan the headlines each day just to make out any trends that may be cropping up in terms of things that I should be wary of. The one thing that I am fully aware of right now, and most concerned about, is the amount of civil unrest that is happening right now in Europe and the Middle East. Millions of people in these areas are extremely fed up with their governments and the banks that have bought out their countries in order to control them, and so are venting their frustrations in the only way that they know how – protesting, looting and other forms of civic violence. I feel that this is a good sign, overall, that people are waking up to the power structure. Unfortunately (or fortunately for now), Americans have not reached their breaking point, but don’t think it won’t happen here. Everyone knows we are on an unsustainable path and that the camel’s back will break. It’s time to prepare right now.

I thinks it’s important for people to focus on four areas – the four ‘B’s’ as I call them. Whether it’s Beans, Band-aids, Bullets or Bullion, you can’t have to many of any of them. For now I will talk about the ‘Bullets’ portion of my strategy.

In terms of cost, this is probably the second most expensive, behind Bullion, that I focus on. In terms of importance, I would say this area is crucial to implement as quickly as possible. The difference between an unsecured dwelling, and a secured dwelling can come down to life and death in civil unrest scenarios. There are many different ways that you can secure your homestead, no matter where you live. From physical barriers to high tech systems it all depends on how controlled you want your property. Personally, I don’t want so much as a bird to set foot on my land without my knowing of it.

To that end, I will show you some things that I am currently doing to make my home a lot safer.

Technology

Home security can actually be very fun to implement. Take security cameras for instance. How awesome is it that we have the ability to set up cameras and view our homes from anywhere in the world? This is something that everyone should have in an age of unprecedented travel ability. If you do not travel, I envy you because it is not fun in my experience. I am a homebody. But if I must be away, I still want to know what’s going on at my home. I currently have 4 cameras on my home all hooked up to one central recorder that I have set up so I can view the cameras on my old phone (which is just a WiFi device now). Whenever I am within WiFi range (such as at work, at relatives homes, etc…) I can view my home. I have plans to have every inch of my 1.5 acres under surveillance within 3-5 years.

Mounted Security Camera

Mounted Security Camera

Physical

Another thing to do is to re-enforce your doors. Doors are the most common way for someone to unlawfully enter your home. You can make your doors impenetrable by installing the Door Sentinel. This security device is EXTREMELY strong, and I feel it will not allow anyone to kick in a door. I have them installed on both of my doors, and will be installing them on any other doors including out-building doors. I have installed one on my mom’s front door. I am also planning to purchase these for other friends and family for Christmas. This device is an absolute ‘must’ for a safe home. Just check out the demonstration ->

Here is what the security device looks like when it is installed ->

This is what the security device looks like around the locks when the door is closed. It is completely unobtrusive and fit very well on our door. When you install the screws into the hinge plates, it tends to suck the door away from this side of the door, so the plates fit better.

Door Closed

Door Closed

These are the hinge covers that go over the hinges where they attach to the door. They prevent the door from being ripped off the hinges in the case of someone kicking in.

Hinge Covers

Hinge Covers Front Side

Hinge Cover Back Side

Hinge Cover Back Side

This is the large wall plate that gets installed. It is very very strong and is secured by 9, 4″ long screws that go right into the door studs. Someone kicking in would have to rip out all 9 together. It’s much more likely they would break the deadlocks before ripping them out!

Wall Plate

Wall Plate

This is the plate that gets fastened around the door locks on the door. This, combined with the wall plate, form a protective steel frame around your deadbolts, making it impossible to break the wood on the door or the wall in the event of a burglary.

Door Plate

Door Plate

There are also devices you can buy that will re-enforce your windows, however, I have not looked into them presently. This is on my ‘to-do’ list so stay tuned for that.

The next security device I am planning to install on my home is a drive way alarm. Our property in particular is very vulnerable in terms of viewing our road/drive way. To fix that, I am installing a device such as this. With one of these on your land, you will know when someone drives up your driveway. Awareness is rule number one in terms of security.

Firearms

The single most important thing you can own in terms of security is a good firearm. Used mainly for intimidation, a good firearm will repel nearly every criminal out there, as most are gigantic cowards looking for an easy ride. To deal with the rest, training is a must. If intimidation doesn’t work on an intruder, most states in the USA allow for a person to defend themselves with deadly force inside their homes if they or a loved on are about to experience grave bodily harm or death. To this end, you must get familiar with your firearm. Go out and practice at least once a week. On top of being ready for unknown events, practicing with a firearm can be very satisfying once you get the hang of it. Just make sure you are safe and know what you are doing. I am fortunate enough to have a neighbor who has taught me how to use a firearm.

In terms of beginners, I cannot recommend enough a Rugar .22 LR. These rifles are extremely useful in terms of removing varmints from your property as well and are very well built. On top of that, they are relatively quiet and have essentially no kick whatsoever, so you can get used to using a firearm, without all the complications. This was the first rifle I bought.

One of the best resources I have found for learning new techniques in terms of using firearms is this YouTube channel. Cory and Erika are extremely knowledgeable about firearms, and actually put their knowledge into action and show others how to use them as well.

Context

The situation you find yourself in will be very dependent on two things – your physical location and the people you surround yourself with. Keeping these two things in mind when purchasing property is very important because these things are very permanent unless you want to move. Try to find a place that is as far away from large metro areas as possible. Metro areas are very unsafe to begin with, but will become living hell-holes if anything disrupts their fragile state. Just look at the east coast right now. Look at the Gulf Coast during 2005. You do not want to be near these areas. Even the most secured home will not be impenetrable if it is located in downtown Manhattan. A home in rural Montana with nothing in terms of security is much safer than the latter. Think about it.

Also, your neighborhood is very important. Getting together with local, like-minded people can make a huge different in terms of security. I am fortunate enough to live around simple-life folks who are down to earth, know how to use firearms and hunt, and are aware of the dangers this world offers to us. They also have real-world experience. This is very important.

When all is said and done, no homestead can be perfect. However, even taking action on one item I’ve mentioned is very powerful, and when combined, the power grows. Just remember that discretion is the better part of valor. Do not advertise your awareness of problems and the actions you are taking. Those that are not ready for strife and who notice you are, will come begging.

That much is guaranteed ->

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Comments

7 Responses to “Homestead Security”

  1. Lynn says:

    Good article, Jonathan. Re-enforcing doors with long screws and metal plates can deter break-ins. Had we re-enforced our doors years ago, we would not have been burglarized. What we learned was invaluable — and this was 9 years ago when things weren’t so bad. Police do NOTHING. They don’t even dust for prints. They simply file a report that’s needed for insurance purposes. Now, many won’t even respond to the complaint.

    What is your back-up on detection devices and security lighting if you lose electric power? Have you thought of solar units?
    Take care.

    • Jonathan says:

      I am confident that I would hear someone trying to break down our doors before they actually got in, with these devices on. They are VERY strong. I highly recommend them if you don’t have them.

      Yep, I am planning to all the essentials like security, water pump and AC running on solar within a few years. There are many solar lights that you can purchase as well.

      My place is going to be a fortress, just wait and see…

  2. Cooler says:

    To Jonathan: given the electrical draw of AC not to mention overcast days and the lifespan of expensive deep cycle batteries I do not know any prepper expert who thinks that AC can run on solar.

    The load on a sump or water pump is much less than the load for AC, however. Solar lights draw next to no wattage compared to AC.

    Digging a multipurpose root cellar with a secure fenced entrance to live in during heat waves even when the average soil temperature in your (subtropical? tropical?) region at 200 cm down is ca. 20 C or 70 F seems a much better bet for you than trying to generate artificial coldness in your house via AC.

    You can die from exhaustion, especially if elderly, at 35-40C air temperature over time (30,000 dead in France in the heatwave of summer 2003) but you will not do so as quickly in your cellar at 20 C.

    • Jonathan says:

      Cooler,

      You make a great comment. A root cellar would for sure be more cost efficient and would work very well. Plus it doubles for food storage.

      Heck even just living in the basement for the summer would be preferential to running AC on solar I suppose. Especially if you insulate very well.

  3. Lynn says:

    Jonathan, look into attic fans to exhaust the excess summer heat, too. We have one but it’s electric. So if the power goes out in the summer, we would have a hot attic.

    Also, consider the evaporative cooling techniques. Depending upon where you live, that may work for you, even as using a solar power source.

    After all of our research, we’re convinced that it’s not practical to retrofit our home into a solar system, even with a bunch of lifestyle changes. All of the components of a solar system have a life expectancy associated with them. We are concerned with that so we don’t believe a full solar system to be worth the large expense. So we’ll change our lifestyle if we’re forced into a non-grid period of time. Short grid-down spurts aren’t a problem but long term, like a month or more, would force a number of changes. And oh would I miss refrigeration…..

    BTW, our basement is much cooler in the summer and if we lost the a/c (which I would really miss in August), we’d be hanging out down there, I’m sure.

  4. Jerre Miller says:

    Where can I find this door device, that covers the hinges and locking device? I am a widow and live alone so this is particularly attractive. Thank you for a great article. Really made me think.. I replaced our hollow core door coming into house from garage with heavy solid wood door but this device would certainly increase the protection. I have a double key dead bolt on front door but it has a half panel of glass in it so I would guess I would need to pre-fit a slab of wood to cover the glass area and bolt it on.

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