If anything positive can be taken out of the recent crime-related incidents in Chestnut Hill over the past few months, it would have to be the renewed and hopefully permanent rise in the community's level of security awareness.
Last week I had the privilege of being asked to attend the Chestnut Hill Business Association meeting as well as Community Association Executive Committee Meeting. The message that I heard was a unified commitment to increase the security in our community, both commercially and residentially, I am proud that the Community which I call home has so many dedicated people working towards an immediate solution to these problems. More police, and improved lighting are just two of the many solutions that are being aggressively pursued.
As homeowners, there are a number of simple and inexpensive steps that each and everyone of us should take to help increase the security of our community.
Porch lights should be turned on at the first sign of darkness. History has shown that criminals would more likely avoid a well lit property. Inexpensive timers are available that will automatically turn the lights on and off to ensure that electricity is conserved. These timers are readily available and easily installed. This simple step may very well keep a criminal off your street. Porch lights can also create enough positive lighting to help combat car thefts as well.
By Scott Elkins
There are also inexpensive motion detection lights that can be installed around your home. Their function is to turn on when movement is detected and then turn off shortly thereafter. This burst of light can be an effective tool to scare off a criminal, while providing you additional "as needed" lighting as you walk around your home.
Today, all homes should be equipped with a Burglar Alarm System. Statistics show that homes with a security system are 2.2 times less likely to be burglarized. With recent advancements in technology, these systems are easy to use and affordable. The investment for a system in an average size home in Chestnut Hill would likely range between $1,000 and $2,000. Many insurance companies offer discounts to home owners utilizing a certified burglar alarm system. These systems are also capable of being upgraded to include fire protection as well.
Too many of our homes are surrounded by trees or shrubbery that make it quite simple for a burglar to invade and remain in your home undetected. Please consider making minor adjustments to your landscaping to enable your neighbors or the police to view your property from the street.
The Business Association and Community Association need our help to assure permanent solutions. The beauty of Chestnut Hill is our unique community, a community worthy of our collective efforts to ensure its protection.