It's usually about this time of year that a lot of companies and most government entities start preparing their budget requests for the next fiscal budget year starting in October. I have been working on some budget figures with regard to crime prevention for you around your home.
Let's start with deadbolt locks. I would estimate that you could replace the existing locks on your exterior doors with double-cylinder deadbolt locks for about $25 apiece. These locks would give you good protection and security for approximately $50.
You could mount a couple of simple motion-detector lights on the corners of your house for added visibility and security. While there are all types of motion-detector lights, some are as inexpensive as $20, totaling $40 for two. The total so far, $90.
Trim your shrubs, hedges or trees around your house so your house can be seen from the street and prevent someone from having a nifty hiding place while they try to break into your home. No cost.
Install secondary locking devices on your windows. These small locks usually come two or three to a package and are approximately $4 a pack. Three packs would cost $12. We're now up to $102.
If you are like me, you have a padlock laying around in one of your junk drawers. Put that lock on the inside of your garage door while you are on vacation. No cost, and it even may make you clean out that junk drawer.
If you have a sliding glass door or french doors, you will need to put a secondary lock on it. These locks can be found at your local home improvement store for around $10 to $12. Now, we are at $114.
Most of the items I mentioned are parts of the requirements to receive a discount on your homeowners insurance. If you meet the minimum standards, you can receive a discount of 5 percent. If your homeowners insurance premium is $800 per year, you would save $40 per year for the three-year term of the discount, which means you would save $120, which is more than you spent on your upgrades. You can save money and still increase your security at your home.
There is a possibility you could receive an even larger homeowners insurance discount if you install an alarm system that meets certain state standards.
To learn more about crime prevention and what you can do in your neighborhood, we invite you to attend one of the three remaining town meetings we are hosting. This week's meeting will be for residents who live in northwest Conroe. This is the area that is north of West Davis Street and west of North Frazier Street. The meeting will be from 7-9 p.m. at the Conroe Parks and Recreation Department's Activity Center, located at 1202 Callahan. We will discuss the results from the citizen surveys we received, what is happening in your neighborhood and listen to your concerns.
For more information or questions, call the Conroe Police Department Crime Prevention Unit at (936) 756-5588, ext. 2250, 2327 or 2226.