Combining both class and style with history and character, period properties can prove to be a difficult challenge when it comes to security. This is especially so when you factor in any covenants connected to listed building status, or those regulations you typically have to abide by in conservation areas.
Period properties are typically more vulnerable than contemporary homes due to their outmoded security systems, which can make them easy targets for burglars. Period properties tend to have more entry points than your average home, with more windows and other points of entry needing to be secured. Therefore, it is important to add modern security solutions to your period property in order to increase the security of the home. This is a good investment and offers the possibility of lowering your insurance premiums as another benefit.
Exterior door security
Older period properties may have iron-framed exterior doors or contain other period features that may make it more vulnerable to attack, and if you think you have one of those doors then there is a simple but effective solution. To strengthen the door, you can simply alter the direction it opens from in to out. This simple trick will make it harder and more time consuming for criminals to kick the door in. Remember, burglars rely on stealth and speed, so any entry point that cannot be breached in seconds is likely to put them off trying that particular entry point.
The age of the door is also a factor to consider, with wear and tear making them less secure and easier to breach than a more modern type of door. Therefore, if you can replace old doors with more contemporary ones without breaching any building or conservation legislation, then do so. Modern doors tend to have more sturdy locks and frames than older doors, and are much more secure as a result.
Making sure you have the correct locks
The installation of mortice locks is one option available for period doors. These locks are typically fitted inside the edge of the door, and this makes it difficult if not impossible to break into, as most of the locking mechanism is contained within the door frame itself. They are ideal for period properties as they will not interfere with the aesthetic quality and style of your period home.
Ideally, you should be fitting five-lever mortice locks to any exterior door, and the locks should show the British Standard Kitemark BS-3621, as these can only be opened with the key, and cannot be opened by a burglar smashing a glass panel and putting their hand through to the inside.
You can boost your exterior door security further by adding bolts to the top or bottom of all doors, which includes French and patio doors.
Security for your windows
Period properties often have more traditional window styles such as wooden framed sash windows for instance, rather than the more contemporary uPVC windows modern homes have. To secure any sash style windows you may have in your property; you should be looking to install sash window locks. These locks will make your sash windows a lot more secure, but don’t forget to check with your local authority’s conservation officer as the addition of these locks may be restricted.
Any property, be it a period one or the more modern variety, is only as secure as its weakest point, therefore, it is important that you take the security of your home seriously. Your local locksmith will be able to identify any weak spots in your home security, be it the type of locks you have or whether you need to boost the security of your windows and doors.