You might not think about it all that often, but your front door is the main thing protecting your home from the outside world. After getting home from a long day at work, you unlock your door, step inside, and obtain peace of mind in knowing you’re safe. However, some front doors offer more of these reassurances than others. Not every front door is as secure as it needs to be, and it’s up to you as a homeowner to do what you can to strengthen them. This is how to increase the security of your front door and keep your home protected.

Install a New Door

If your front door is visibly damaged or allowing drafts into the home, these can be signs you need to replace it. Weakened entryways that exhibit these traits aren’t functioning to their fullest ability, and, as such, they don’t protect you nearly as much as they should. The first step to keeping yourself and your belongings safe is to purchase a strong and sturdy replacement. There’s a variety of different exterior doors to choose from, so finding something that fits in your budget shouldn’t be overly difficult.

Upgrade Your Locks

The next crucial step for improving home security is to upgrade your old, faulty exterior locks. People tend to think of their locks as things that last for the entirety of a house’s life span, but they actually erode with time like anything else. This is especially the case with exterior locks, as they’re directly exposed to the moisture in the outdoor air. When you’re going to purchase new locks, make sure to consider the type of door you have as well as what metals the lock system is made out of. These details can affect the effectiveness of the lock and its ability to withstand certain entry methods.

Purchase a Security Screen

You can also increase the security of your front door by installing a screen in front of it. These perforated metal fences provide an extra layer of defense in your home’s entryway to deter thieves from trying to break in. They’re equipped with additional locking mechanisms, and, depending on the metal from which they’re made, they’re resistant to physical force. For these reasons, security screens are always a nice thing to have if you feel unsafe in your neighborhood.

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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.