There are few things more chilling than a home burglary. Imagine a stranger rifling through and stealing your possessions – to say nothing of the danger if you or your family members are home at the time of the break-in. Fortunately, you can take steps to deter potential thieves by using outdoor lighting to increase the visibility around your home. Today's inexpensive LED and smart technologies mean that you can create a system that is attractive, efficient and responsive without breaking the bank. Protect your home and your family with some of these outdoor lighting ideas.

A Light in the Darkness

Your outdoor lighting system should include lights near any doors and windows where a person could enter the house. "The biggest thing for any person who can burglarize a home is the ability to secrete movements," a Chicago Police Department spokesperson told the Chicago tribune. "This means darkness.”

Many outdoor lighting systems are easy to install on your own, although a few may require the help of an electrician for new wiring. LED bulbs are an attractive option because they use only about a quarter of the energy of incandescent bulbs and last up to 25 times as long. Some outdoor lights come equipped with a built-in security camera that will not only light up to scare off any would-be burglars, but also capture their image so you can notify police of the suspicious activity.

Stand-alone solar panel lights are a good option for walkways, although they shouldn't be relied on as a home security measure since variations in weather mean they might not always provide enough light to deter a prowler.

Getting Smart About Your Lighting

Smart lighting systems let you control your entire home’s lighting setup from your smartphone, even when you're away from the house. You can adjust timers, motion sensors, dimming functions or manually instruct the lights to come on or off. Certain smart lighting and security systems will automatically alert you when someone is at the door and allow you to talk to them through your phone no matter where you are in the world.

With smart technology, you can also add an extra layer of deterrence by having indoor lights come on for a period of time when you are away, giving the appearance that somebody is home. If you already have a lighting system in place, you can upgrade it to a smart system by swapping in some wireless smart switches and installing a control hub.

A Safer and More Attractive Residence

Lighting up your outdoor space is more than just a way to deter burglars. It can also make your yard look more attractive at night and help visitors safely navigate their way to your door.

If you need help planning or installing an outdoor security lighting scheme, contact your local electrician right away.

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