Security Blog

4th of July BBQ Ideas

4th of July BBQ Ideas

Monitronics wants to know: what are you doing for 4th of July? Will you be hanging out at home, entertaining friends and family? Or will you be away? There are so many options for fun on the 4th of July, and we have some great suggestions for different ways to celebrate our nation’s independence, while Monitronics makes sure your home is safe and secure.

  • Are you headed out to enjoy the festivities in your hometown? Check your local papers for information on fun events you may not even know exist! In some areas, locals show up and march in the parade, while others host potluck picnics, festivals and even BBQ competitions! Do a little research, and you may find something fun and unique that you never knew went on right in your own backyard.
  • Hosting a backyard barbecue is a great way to unleash your inner domestic deity. Make sure you’ve created comfortable places for people to sit and chat, and then let yourself go wild with the decorating: Choose a theme, put fresh flowers and candles everywhere, make flag centerpieces like this flowery one or this easy one, and do whatever makes you a happy host!
  • Keeping kids occupied on the 4th of July is easy as pie! Plan some fun crafts, like this 4th of July wand or this stunning patriotic wreath. You can also play games, or teach kids interesting facts about the holiday and our nation’s history. If you’ve got a crowd of kids, organize them into a parade, complete with balloons, flags and bikes decorated with streamers and ribbons.
  • Speaking of pie, here are some great recipes to try at your barbecue. Follow these links for Easy Coleslaw, Creamy Guacamole with Bacon, Corn Muffin Poblano Cups, and yes, even Strawberry Pie.
  • Don’t forget to have games at your backyard barbecue! Click here for a great list of suggestions, including old classics like bocce, horseshoes and badminton as well as some new, not-yet favorites such as Beersbee and Giant Jenga.

Monitronics wants you to have a great 4th of July! While you’re doing what makes you happy, and whether you’re enjoying your grill, your vacation, your town or just hanging out with your family and friends, you can trust us to take care of your home. Learn more about Monitronics home security systems by visiting our website, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

 
Sources:
https://www.care.com/a/12-fun-fourth-of-july-activities-for-kids-1306140300
http://www.food.com/package/summer-grilling?
http://www.jadelouisedesigns.com/host-a-backyard-bbq/
http://cottagelife.com/101671/entertaining/tips-entertaining/the-10-best-backyard-games-you-can-play-without-setting-down-your-brew
http://tidymom.net/2012/patriotic-centerpiece/
http://www.ehow.com/how_12339976_7-easy-steps-creating-mason-jar-flag-centerpiece.html

US Summer Crime Statistics: Crime Increases with the Temperature

In 1935, no less an expert than FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover noted that murders and aggravated assaults are typically more frequently committed during hot summer months, while robberies and burglaries are most commonly committed in the winter months. Though he never referenced any specific scientific data to back up his statement, subsequent studies have shown a definite correlation between crime rates and weather patterns.

A 2014 report from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) found that instances of household larceny, burglary, aggravated assault, rape and sexual assault are highest during the summer months. When adjusted for seasonal variance, the difference in the lowest and highest rates for violent crimes was less than 12 percent. However, that variation applies to crime in general; individual crimes see different variations from season to season.

A good example is home burglary. The DOJ report contradicts part of Hoover’s observation, however, clearly showing that the highest incidence of burglary is during the summer months, and the lowest incidence is during the winter. The difference between the two is 10.5 percent. That means for every 100 burglaries committed during the winter there are just over 110 during the summer. It would appear as though burglars enjoy the warm weather as much as anyone else does.

Possible Explanations

A number of possible explanations have been offered for the seasonal crime increase phenomenon. For example, a study from the University of North Carolina suggests that the added discomfort of hot summer weather tends to make people more agitated and irritable. When such emotions are heightened, the tendency toward violence goes up as well. It sounds plausible, but the theory does not explain the increase in home burglaries, which tend to be nonviolent in most cases.

Some suggest home burglaries increase during the summer because people are more likely to leave their homes empty for longer periods. Summer is also an open invitation to fresh air and sunshine, leading people to leave their windows and storm doors open. Perhaps criminals get a better idea of what is inside a home through additional visual access. And, of course, there is always a tendency to leave home without remembering to close the windows.

It Can Be Too Hot

Despite the summer months leading to an increase in certain kinds of crimes, statistics do show something curious: It can get too hot for criminals. Temperatures of 90 degrees or higher tend to send criminals back indoors to enjoy the AC. Even burglars get to the point where it is too hot to work.

This would suggest that areas such as the deep South would see an overall decrease in certain crimes during the hottest months of June, July and August. They would be more apt to see crime spike during the spring and fall. It would be interesting to break down the results on a state-by-state basis to see if this is so.

Regardless off the driving forces, there is little doubt that crime follows certain weather patterns. Certain kinds of crime, including burglary and larceny, are more prevalent during the summer months. That means staying safe this summer should include a viable personal security strategy that alleviates threats as much as possible.

Monitronics can help you get a leg up on preventing summer crime by installing a home security system with 24-hour monitoring. Our authorized dealers utilize the latest home security technology backed up by trained security personnel who staff our remote monitoring facility around the clock. A home security system from Monitronics is an affordable and reliable way to protect your property this summer.

Sources:

  1.  S. Department of Justicehttp://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/spcvt.pdf
  2. Wall Street Journalhttp://www.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052748703995104575389461974136120
  3. UNChttp://www.unc.edu/~curran/pdfs/Hipp,Bauer,Curran,Bollen(2004).pdf

Don’t Look on the Shelf for Home Security Monitoring

Home security is a priority for you, because you want to keep your home and family safe. However, there are so many different options that it may be confusing and difficult to choose.

For instance, maybe you’re wondering if you’d be better off buying a home security system off the shelf than paying for a monitored system. Before you settle, consider this: A professionally monitored home security system from Monitronics gives you not only the benefit of professional installation, but also the added protection of around-the-clock live monitoring.

  • Live monitoring adds a level of protection you’d otherwise be missing. Using an unmonitored security system is like being lost in the woods. You can call out for help, but what happens if no one hears?
  • An unmonitored system relies on neighbors and passers-by to get help. Unmonitored systems generally work like a car alarm, by creating a disturbance to deter thieves and attract attention. They use strobe lights and loud alarms as a deterrent, but that’s not an effective way to get help if something bad is happening.
  • Response time is one of the biggest reasons for choosing a monitored system, and Monitronics’ award-winning Alarm Response Center quickly provides help 24 hours a day. When an emergency is detected in a home monitored by Monitronics, a signal immediately goes to trained professionals at our Alarm Response Center, where a quick verification call can help get the police rolling in a hurry.
  • If you’re still not sure that a monitored security system makes sense, ask a burglar.  In a study of convicted burglars, more than 60 percent said they would look for a different target if they knew the house was being monitored.
  • Live monitoring can even cover fire and carbon monoxide detectors. Every second counts, since home fires can spread in as little as 30 seconds. It’s beneficial to have smoke and carbon monoxide alarms that alert our Alarm Response Center to verify the emergency and contact the fire department, while you concentrate on getting your family to safety. Professional monitoring also means you don’t have to be home to call for help. If your fire alarm goes off, we’ve got you covered day or night, whether you’re home or not.
  • Monitored home security can potentially save you money. Check with your insurance provider to see the impact a professionally monitored system will have on your premium, because some insurers will reduce your bill by as much as 15 percent.

With the right home security equipment supported by the right people, we provide peace of mind that you won’t find on a shelf. Let one of our authorized dealers show you why Monitronics monitoring makes sense. Learn more about home security systems by visiting our website, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Knowing Local Crime Statistics Can Help Protect Your Neighborhood

Knowing Local Crime Statistics Can HelpProtect Your Neighborhood

Monitronics is committed to helping protect your home and possessions, but is there more you can do to fight neighborhood crime? It’s important to take precautions and join forces with others in your area to keep your neighborhood safe. Monitronics offers a new tool to help increase awareness of crimes so you can reduce the crime rate in your neighborhood.

The Monitronics crime reports tool features a map of your area, showing where and what kind of incidents have occurred nearby. You can filter incidents by crime, so it’s easy to see what’s been happening. You can choose the specific area you want to search and narrow it down by a preferred date range. There’s even a button that allows you to receive alerts and one that lets you report crime when it happens. Once you know what’s going on, be sure to share the information with those around you, because neighbors working together are a powerful deterrent to crime.

Here are some ways you can make your neighborhood a safer place:

  • Know your neighbors. Introduce yourself and become familiar with those around you. It’s good to know who belongs in the neighborhood and who doesn’t, but being friendly with your neighbors serves a deeper purpose when it comes to neighborhood crime. Neighbors who care about each other are able to rely on each other to keep an eye on things.
  • Welcome law enforcement’s involvement in your community. Organize a neighborhood meeting to discuss concerns and invite your local law enforcement agency to send a representative. They will be a good resource, offering you advice and tips for reducing crime.
  • Take surveillance seriously. It’s a good idea to know who in your neighborhood is protecting their homes with a security system. There’s also merit in the idea of pooling resources with your neighbors to set up some surveillance cameras at risky spots in the neighborhood. The more “eyes” on your neighborhood, the more likely criminals will be caught and crime deterred.
  • Form a Neighborhood Watch. The reason Neighborhood Watch programs have existed for such a long time is that they work. Today’s programs can use the Neighborhood Watch app, valuable for reporting any suspicious activity.

All of these measures are important ways to deter crime in your area, but they’re not enough to ensure the safety of your home and belongings. Monitronics can fill in the gap, providing home automation and home security systems that have everything you need to keep you and your family safe! Learn more about home security systems by visiting our website, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Sources:

http://www.monitronics.com/neighborhood-crime-report
http://www.safewise.com/blog/5-ways-team-neighbors-keep-crime-bay/

Sleep Better at Night with a Security System

Woman can't sleep during night

Is one of your biggest fears being startled awake at night by an intruder in your home?

It’s only natural to be concerned about your safety any time you’re vulnerable. Unfortunately, you are most vulnerable when you’re sleeping, especially if you live alone.

You can get the peace of mind you need to sleep restfully by installing a home security system with around-the-clock monitoring. Home security lets you rest comfortably knowing that an alarm will wake you up at the first sign of trouble. If your home is being remotely monitored by a company like Monitronics, alert monitoring center personnel can quickly assess the situation and notify the police.

Home Security Equipment

The first step in using home security for a better night’s sleep is to install a reputable system with top-of-the-line equipment. Entry-level systems begin with sensors installed on first-floor windows and doors. This is a good place to start, since crime statistics clearly show that first-floor doors and windows are the most common entry points for criminals.

Additional equipment can be installed to create a customized security system suitable for any circumstance. For example, additional sensors can be installed on basement windows, garage doors, and even second-floor windows that might be accessible by way of a tree or outbuilding. Motion detectors can be placed in strategic locations throughout the home in case an intruder is not deterred by the alarm.

Lastly, video surveillance cameras are an excellent tool for deterring intruders. When criminals see exterior cameras, they usually understand that their actions are being monitored and recorded. Those recordings can be used in court as evidence to convict. Such risks are usually enough to send a criminal in the other direction.

Benefits of Home Monitoring

It is possible to install a home security system that works independently of home monitoring. However, home monitoring is very affordable and well worth the investment. Indeed, home monitoring is like having an extra set of eyes and ears keeping watch over your property night and day.

In the event of a home intrusion, an alarm system will make plenty of noise, but do nothing to summon help. A system connected to a remote monitoring center sends an alert to that center when the alarm is triggered. Trained security personnel can immediately communicate the homeowner to find out what’s going on, and contact the police if necessary for the fastest possible response time.

A home security system with monitoring is an ideal option for individuals who want to do everything they can to ensure personal safety. For those who live alone, it is indispensable. We invite anyone who lives alone to contact Monitronics for more information about equipment and monitoring packages.

Just about anyone can benefit from a home security system with monitoring, including:

  • Seniors who live alone.
  • Couples just starting out in a new home.
  • Growing families with small children.
  • Single professionals who spend a lot of time away.

Just about everyone looking to sleep better at night can benefit from a home security system. If you haven’t installed one yet, contact Monitronics today for more information. If you do have a system, you don’t need to be a current Monitronics customer in order to sign up for our award-winning monitoring.

If you are ready to sleep better at night, give us a call.