As you may be aware the fastest growing demographic in real estate sales is single women second only to married couples. Previously we asked the question, “What are Single Women looking for ….. In a Home?” Well, high on the list of 10 things most desired by single women when purchasing a home was security.
Coldwell Banker’s latest consumer survey found that a home’s security is a deal breaker! Sixty-four percent of women said if they found the home of their dreams but had concerns about its security, they would no longer be interested. Single women also account for a large number of condominium purchases where they find a sense of security. Builders, who have also taken notice of this growing segment, are betting on features such as gourmet kitchens, built in vacuums and security systems to attract single female buyers.
The following list should be taken into consideration when determining the security of a home.
1. Buy Homes With Attached Garages. Consider how you might feel walking in the dark toward the house if your garage were detached. Insist on an electronic garage door opener.
2. Consider Gated Communities Ask how often the gate code is changed. Most homeowner associations routinely change the codes to prevent entry by unauthorized persons. Check to make sure the gate is timed to close before a second car can enter.
3. Pay Attention to Lighting Abundant street lighting and motion-sensor lights offer more security than dimly lit areas.
4. Buy Homes With Security Systems Find out if the security system is leased or owned and how much it costs per month. Ask for an explanation about how the home is wired, and whether all the doors and windows are monitored on the system.
5. Inspect Door Locks and Door Jambs Look at the door jamb to determine if it’s been cracked or repaired. Notice if the lock is new. A screen door that acts as a security door with its own locking system provides more protection.
6. Check Location of Bedrooms Second-floor bedrooms might appear safer, but the likelihood is the distance from the first floor could make them effectively soundproof, so sounds of a break-in may not travel to the second floor.
7. Consider Condos Above the Main Floor Criminals don’t want to bother with climbing stairs, taking an elevator or being noticed in a building, which is why first-floor condos tend to attract more crime. Condos that face the street are often considered more secure.
8. Inspect the Windows Single-pane windows are easier to break than dual pane. If any of the exterior doors have large windows of glass, make sure the door knob is located far enough away from the window to discourage break-ins.
9. Beware of Homes on an Alley, Alleys are quiet, generally dark at night, and provide ways for criminals to approach your home – unnoticed by the neighbors.
10. Pull Neighborhood Crime Reports Most city police departments report crime statistics online.
11. Check Out the Neighboring Structures Some studies show that crime is higher in mixed-use neighborhoods than in subdivisions or communities of single family homes.
12. Buy Homes With a Fenced Back Yard A fenced yard discourages crime because it makes it harder for unauthorized persons togain access.
There are many factors to consider when determining the security of a home or neighborhood. Hopefully the above list will help guide potential homebuyers in making a safe and secure decision.