No one wants to come home to find their home turned upside down and their valuable possessions missing. Even if you live in a community with a fairly low crime rate, there will always be a chance that burglars may hit your neighborhood and hit your home.
According to Neighborhoodscout’s, Myrtle Beach is ranked 12th on a list of 100 of the the most dangerous cities in the United States. To look at the statistics, click here to compare violent crimes and property crimes in Myrtle Beach with the rest of South Carolina.
At Strand Security we want our community safe and that means we want you, our blog readers and our Facebook Fans and our customers to be safe! That is why we are going to give you the breakdown on break-ins. The following will discuss burglary statistics, who the typical burglar is, when and how break- ins occur, why homes are targeted, and what burglars are looking for.
The typical burglar may not exactly look like the boogie man. They may look like a salesman, a utility worker, or maybe someone you might invite in for tea. Lets take a look at the typical burglar…
Burglars are looking for items that can easily be transferred into cash. The money is often used to support their drug habit.
If you are part of the 17% of homeowners who do have an alarm system installed, kudos to you! If not, give us a call today!
When building new houses from the foundation up, there are many things to take into consideration. Things such as cabinets, paint colors, lighting, and flooring to name just a few. However, there are other items that are not so cosmetic that are also part of the process and very important. Electrical wiring and plumbing are two of these examples. We all know that both electrical and plumbing systems have to be installed during the building process. May we suggest three things to add to your list that may help sell your house faster if they are pre-installed?
Wiring and cables for things such as home theaters, Central Vacuums, and security systems are much easier to install before the drywall goes up. It is far cheaper and easier to install these during the building process rather than later. Can you imagine the cost of having a central vac added after the walls go up and everything is completed?
Here are a few great reasons to consider having your new spec homes wired for a home theater, security system and having a central vac installed.
Why pre-install a Security System?
Both homeowners and builders should consider the statistics when it comes to protecting their families, and clients. Statistics paint an interesting picture as to how home security systems and alarm monitoring can affect crime rates and home burglaries. According to the FBI, there were an estimated 8,277,829 property crimes in the United States during 2014. A major deterrent to home burglaries is a home security system. With crime rates increasing in metro cities especially, now is the time to pre-install a security system.
According to a study done by University of North Carolina, when interviewing burglars, a security system is a deterrent.
Pre-wiring and installation by professionals during the building process assures that the security system will be in place the moment you move in. That means you can feel safe immediately upon moving in. For decades, home security systems have kept houses and their occupants safe and secure.
Why have a central vacuum pre-installed?
Central Vacuums are very convenient! Are you sick of dragging a heavy and awkward canister vacuum around the house and even up the stairs? Give your back a break and install a Central Vacuum. Another added bonus, the Central Vac canister only needs emptied about 2 to 3 times a year! They are also economical to install and will add value to the home.
“EPA estimates that indoor air may be up to five times more polluted than outdoor air.”
Pollen, dander, fur, dust and more remain in the canister vacuums and will escape back into the air. A central vacuum removes them all to the outside of the house, while only taking approximately 30 minutes.
Central Vacuum Cleaners are the best solution for healthier air!
Why pre-install a home theater?
If you greatly enjoy watching movies then it will likely be worth the investment for you. Experience being at a movie theater in the comfort of your own home! The surround sound alone will put you in the drivers seat of your favorite movie.
You can upgrade your home with more than just granite countertops; a state of the art home theater system. By pre-wiring the whole house, you allow a new home owner to choose whether to add a home theater immediately or later, without having to reconstruct anything.
Investing in a security system, Central Vacuum, and home theater takes a great deal of research, knowledge, and confidence. That is why it is convenient to go ahead and get your systems pre-installed when your home is being built. Strand Security of Myrtle Beach can do all of your installations for you!
Remember that pre-installation is cost effective and will save a lot of work in the long run and it may just be the ticket to selling your homes faster!
To learn more about how we can help you, give us a call today!
There comes a time when every parent questions if their child is ready to stay home alone. For some this is a sign of growth and independence in their child, for others it is a time they dread. Either way, it is bound to happen!
There is an ongoing debate on what age is appropriate for children to stay home alone. To make it easy for you, we’ll start with a simple answer; it is not a one size fits all!
The first way to know if your child is ready to be left home alone is to check your state laws! Several states in this country – The United States – have a minimum age requirement for children being lawfully allowed to stay home alone, while other states leave the decision to the parents by not providing a law or clear guidance. Click here to see your state law regarding age. It goes without saying, that all state laws should be followed.
The maturity and the safety of a child should be the main points taken into heavy consideration after checking your state law, before leaving them alone. Just because some state laws may say your child might be left home alone at the age of 10, some children that age may not be ready. Strand Security of Myrtle Beach wants you and your family to feel comfortable with this new stepping stone in your child’s life, therefore we are offering some ways to consider maturity and safety of the child and your home.
Before leaving your child home alone their maturity must be taken into consideration and thus this is the second way to know if your child is ready to be left home alone!
First of all, you will want to know how your child feels about being in the home alone. If they feel anxious then they probably are not ready. However, some children may feel excited and have a sense of pride about being alone at home.
There are several questions to ask before leaving a child…
Can the child lock and unlock all the doors, as well as the windows?
Can they use the telephone and operate appliances properly?
They must be able to read and write a message, give directions, and follow emergency procedures.
Do they know basic first-aid procedures?
Also consider how your child handles certain situations…
Is your child showing responsibility with following directions, homework, and chores?
Does your child panic or get anxious when things do not go as planned?
Do they follow rules and safety measures?
How does your child react to strangers?
It is important to take certain measures to assure the safety of any child left home alone and if you feel your home provides a safe place for your child to be alone this is the third way to know if your child is ready to be left home alone. The following suggestions will help protect your child.
Prepare a list of fun activities and chores for the child to do. This will keep them active and will help pass the time.
There are several factors to consider before making the decision to leave a child home alone. Discuss the factors with all family members and set consequences for breaking the rules.
Once you feel that you and your child are both ready for this next step, it is important to do a practice round for a short period of time where you go out an maybe run a quick nearby errand or visit with neighbors. If everything goes well, then you are all set. You and your child have now reached a new stepping stone in life.
Being home alone and hearing an unexpected knock at your door can be creepy. Let’s be honest here, it would rattle me a bit! More times than not, it is someone you do not have to worry about. However, it is always better to play it safe. Do not open your door blindly! Statistics show that many burglars break in through the front door.
That is why at Strand Security of Myrtle Beach we suggest ‘proceed with caution’ when a stranger knocks at your door. The following are guidelines to help you when you have an unexpected, or unwanted, knock at your door.
Take a look at the Stranger.
Try to get a look at who is knocking on your door. You may need to find a window in the house that makes your front door visible or use the peephole if you have one. You must have a way to see who is at the front door without opening it!
Keep Your Phone on You.
Have your phone visibly on you for the knocker to see. If a situation should occur you will have easy access to call 911.
Call Out to Someone in the House.
“Can someone get the door?” or “I’ll get it”
Maybe you are alone but the knocking stranger does not have to know that! Make it evident that there are others in the house with you. This can deter any planned unwanted activities.
Do Not Ignore Them.
Sometimes the first reaction is to just ignore a stranger’s knock all together. However, in doing so, you are silently announcing that your house is empty and now is a good time to break in. So, it is better to say something no matter the time of day. A majority of break-ins occur during the day when people are thought to be at work.
Request Their Identity.
If a utility worker knocks at your door, ask for them to prove their identity with the company they work for. You can always call the subject’s company to check if they have sent someone to your house.
Do Not Share Information.
If you open your door and a stranger is asking you personal information, do not answer it. They may ask what hours you work, if you will be home tomorrow or about family members at the house. Do not answer questions like these. Also, if they get pushy tell them to leave and that you will call the police.
Strangers may take advantage of you by saying they are in trouble, hurt or in need of help. As much as we all would like to help our fellow citizens, it may be a better choice to let them know you are calling 911 and help is on the way.
Install a Door Chain
The purpose of a door chain is to allow you to communicate with someone without opening the door all the way. These can be used in conjunction with other locks on your door. Be aware that a door chain can be compromised.
Install a Peephole
If you have no way to visually see your knocker, you should install a peephole. If you have to open a door to get a look, this may make you vulnerable.
Install an Intercom Speaker
Two way communication is inexpensive and adequate way to speak with someone at your door, without having to open the door. You can mount the intercom at the outside of the front door.
Install a Security Camera
Having a security camera at the front door allows you to see your knocker without having to open the door. It also deters burglars when they see a camera. Attach a sign to your house that indicates surveillance for an added bonus.
Get a Dog
Answer the door with your guard dog by your side. Click on this link, TOP 10 GUARD DOGS and take a look at every burglars worst nightmare.
Your Security. Our Business!
Retail theft may have a severe impact on your business! According to The National Association for Shoplifting Prevention more than $35 million worth of product is stolen from retail stores everyday. This number is astronomical. That is why it is important to stay aware and be prepared to stop the theft from happening in the first place. Here at Strand Security we want to make sure our local Myrtle Beach and Maryland businesses know what it takes to win this battle. The following statistics will hopefully open your eyes; we believe every retail owner would want to know everything we are about to share with you.
There is no actual physical profile of a typical shoplifter. They come in all ages and genders, sizes and shapes, and all ethnicities. Shoplifters steal for many different reasons; some steal out of necessity, some out of peer pressure, desire, and some because it may be a business transaction.
Although you may not be able to pinpoint a shoplifter by their physical appearance, here are some traits and signs to look for in a potential shoplifter…
Once you understands the signs, you can now train your employee’s in general shoplifting prevention techniques.
Have your staff
It is unfortunate that when we hire people we think we can trust, that trust gets broken. Employee theft plays a large role in retail loss. The following ideas and solutions will help prevent or at least, reduce in house theft.
‘Slow down, the music’s too loud, put your seatbelt on, watch the road, don’t even think about touching your phone, pay attention!’
The list can go on and on, right?
We all wonder if what we teach our children about driving is enough. Even if we do, will they follow through with everything we taught them? The statistics for teenage driving (and the danger it produces) are staggering in this country. Strand Security wants to make sure all of our teens in Myrtle Beach are safe while on the road.
Let’s take a look at statistics and figure out why you may choose to “track your teen and stay in the driver’s seat”
The leading cause of death for teenagers in the United States is motor vehicle crashes.
● 1 in 5 teenage drivers has an accident in their first year of driving.
● Over 74,000 young people die or are injured each year by not wearing seat belts.
● Two-thirds of teen passenger deaths are in vehicles driven by other teenagers.
● Over one-third of teen fatal crashes are speed related.
● A 16 year old is 20 times more likely to be killed in a crash than an adult.
● The risk of a crash is higher with 16-19 year olds than any other age group. Drivers ages 16-19 are 3 times more likely to be in a fatal crash than drivers over the age of 20. This is because teens are more likely to underestimate dangerous situations
● Teens that drive with other teenagers in the vehicle and the presence of male passengers increases the risky behavior (go figure!)
● Those that do not wear seatbelts. Did you know that teens have the lowest rate of seat belt use over all other age groups?
● Drivers with inexperience
● New drivers allowed to drive at night; from 2012 statistics we know that 49% of teen fatal crashes occurred between midnight and 3 AM.
So how can we prevent accidents before they happen, and make our teens safer on the roads?
Research shows that seat belts reduce serious crash-related deaths and injuries by about half.
The above information is a useful tool to help start off with a new teen driver. However, at Strand Security we like to take it one step farther with Honeywell Total Connect™. This is a tracking service we provide that will allow you to “track your teens and stay in the driver’s seat”
Honeywell Total Connect™ allows your teen to be on the go and you to know!
Connect with us, your local Honeywell Total Connect™ dealer and we’ll get your teenager on their way, safely!
We at Strand Security, as business owners, know first-hand that opening a business is no small feat. When you open a business, it is like gaining a new family member; you want to protect it and nurture it and watch it grow. Whether it is a security company like ours, or a restaurant; the concerns we have are very similar. We at Strand Security would like to share some industry-specific tips for security systems for restaurants, as many of our customers here in the Myrtle Beach area are restaurant owners. We know there is huge competition in the restaurant industry in Myrtle Beach. Therefore, protecting every aspect of the business is important.
Having a security system, including cameras helps prevent (or catch in the act)
● Employee theft
● Customer behavior
● Suspicious Activity
Running a restaurant is complicated!
You have staff including waiters, cooks, managers, bartenders and more.
How many staff members handle cash and credit cards? Every waiter and bartender are constantly handling your money, right?
Unfortunately, it is far too easy for money to be stolen in the restaurant business. Annual revenue loss due to employee theft can shut down a small business. That is why we highly recommend installing security cameras as a precautionary measure.
Hopefully, you do not need to use the security cameras to catch your employees in acts of defiance. But when it comes down to it, it is better to be safe than sorry. You will also have proof which will help you should you need to fire someone. One more benefit; when people know they are being watched, they are less likely to act on impulses.
Just like you need to monitor your staff, you will also want to monitor your serving area and your customers.
Who knows what is lurking outside after the lights are turned off and the doors are locked, right? Parking lots are scary places.
You and your closing staff will feel more secure knowing there are cameras at every angle on the outside of your restaurant, as well as an alarm system.
Did you know you can watch your employees and customers from the comfort of your home if you have Honeywell Total Connect™? You can monitor your business, your employees and your customers on your favorite device, wherever you are.
If security systems are put in place, you will protect your investment, your employees, customers and your overall sense of well-being.
Have you ever had the hair on the back your neck stand up? Ever have that instant feeling you know something is wrong?
This is a common occurrence when people come home to find a door or window broken in. Then they notice missing items from around the house. Then they quickly exit the house hoping whoever was there is now gone.
What’s missing? Family heirlooms, great grandmother’s diamond ring, or even a child’s piggy bank.
Result: The family feels violated and angry.
Could there have been a way to prevent a burglar from breaking in? We at Strand Security want to make sure you are safe here in Myrtle Beach.
To do this, it is important to get into the mind of a burglar.
First off, they will not be walking around in a ski mask. They will most likely be scoping out your house dressed as a utility worker (cable or electric repair). Door to door salesmen can easily get an idea of the inside of your house when you answer the door for them. Or perhaps they will just post a flyer, while they look for a burglar alarm.
When burglars are looking for the right house to burglarize, they look for privacy fences and trees or shrubbery. These fences and the vegetation may prevent neighbors from seeing what is about to happen.
Speaking of vegetation, if your yard is not manicured that may mean you are not around very much.
Jewelry is a hot ticket item. Knowing an adult female is living in the house is an added bonus because there is more than likely jewels to be taken.
Dogs, they always look for dogs. Big or small, their barks can give a lot of warning.
First they will ring the doorbell to make sure no one is home, making up a bogus story if someone answers.
Next they will check all doors and windows to see if they are unlocked. If they are locked, they will check if an extra key has been hidden around the perimeter of the house.
If it comes down to it, they will break a window or use a handy-dandy crowbar to get in.
A burglar spends an average of 8 minutes in a house.
any or all of the above!
Do you have these items in your home?
(using 2010 data, the most recent data available)
If you do not have a security system yet, we strongly urge you to get it taken care of today! Start here.
This past Thursday Strand Security of Murrells Inlet and Maryland celebrated its fifth anniversary by holding an Open House and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at their new showroom.
Fully Licensed & Insured Strand Security believes in making our world safer and more secure one customer at a time. We have an unrelenting focus on providing excellent customer service, innovative products, competitive rates and a proficient service team. We know that in today’s market, it’s vital to know our customers personally and offer accessibility by making their security needs our first priority. We exceed expectations with a professional, productive team that is always ready to go above and beyond. Your Security, is Our Business when you choose Strand Security to protect your home or business.
We are proud to show off some of the pictures of our Open House.
The balloon and flowers made it festive!
We had wonderful visitors to our Open House. There we many Chamber of Commerce members!
Corina, our sales representative helped us host this event!
The moment before the ribbon was cut!
And then there was cake, lots of cake!
Your hosts, Chuck and Heather Bryant!
We all like to believe we know exactly what we would do if a fire were to occur in our home.
However, when panic sets in will you be as prepared as you once thought you were? Fires double in size every 60 seconds, so it is imperative to try to stay calm. Panic can lead to clouded judgement, which in turn can lead to chaos. The best way to keep from panicking is to be prepared.
This can be done by doing the following three things:
If you want to know more statistics on home fires, check out this source, 4052 civilian home fire fatalities reported by U.S. news media between January 1, 2014 and September 15, 2015.
We at Strand Security want to make sure the people of Myrtle Beach are safe and sound. The following will outline several tips on how to protect your family in case of a house fire.
Did you know:
Here are a few tips about smoke alarms:
● Keep your smoke alarm up to date. It is a good plan to replace all smoke alarm batteries once a year. To make it easy to remember, perhaps do them all at the same time. Also, did you know that smoke alarms have a shelf life and may not work as well over time, they lose sensitivity. It is a good idea to change your smoke alarms every 8 to 10 years but be sure to check them monthly.
● Smoke alarms need to be placed in every room on every level of the house.
● Having a smoke alarm system that is hard wired and monitored is your best protection in case of fire!
● Practice fire drills often. The more practice, the less panic.
● Do not only conduct fire drills during the day, but every once in a while conduct them at night while everyone is sleeping.
● Draw a floor plan.
● Practice your exit strategy from each room of the house. Escape ladders are important for second story homes.
● Sound your smoke alarm to begin the drill.
● Exit the house as fast as possible.
● Go to your meeting spot outside.
Other important things to remember:
● Plan two ways of escape from every room, the door or perhaps the window if necessary.
● Make sure all windows and doors are clear from obstructions and open properly.
● Stay low to the ground to avoid smoke. The smoke will be black and it will be hard for you to see.
● Always check closed doors for heat by touching the door handle before opening, if hot then place a towel under the door and use a window.
● Do not call 911 from inside the house, call outside or at a neighbor’s house. You may only have up to two minutes to get out of your house.
● Pick an outdoor meeting spot, make sure you let the fire department know everyone is out and safe.
● Once you are out, stay out. You may be lucky you got out the first time but not so lucky the second.
Knowledge and prevention!
Use caution when…
● Smoking: you can greatly reduce the risk of fire by smoking outside.
● Lighting Candles: never leave an open flame unattended, you may opt for battery operated candles instead.
● Cooking: do not leave the kitchen unattended while preparing a meal.
● Heating: space heaters need to be secured in an upright position. Make sure they can not be knocked over by pets or children.
● Electrical Malfunction: older, overused or faulty appliances may lead to a fire.
Related article: Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Practice, prevention and knowledge can go along way when it comes to your safety. With the above tools you are on your way to protecting yourself and your family from a house fire.