Hey friends, thanks for stopping by to read my 14 safety tips for women living alone.
Whether we’re traveling or at home, nothing is more important than our personal safety.
I’ve had cars vandalized and property stolen over the years, but there is only one time that someone, probably more than one person, attempted to break into my house while I was in bed. The door they smashed in led to a room with one of the alarm panels, so they heard the warning buzzer and took off. I didn’t see them. They stole nothing. More importantly, I wasn’t hurt.
I’ve even more hyper-alert about my security since I had a frightening awakening.
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1. Choosing where you live
The most important thing about living alone is choosing where you live.
Is the area well lit?
Are there places (shrubs, trees, cars) where creepers can hide?
Does the neighborhood look run down?
Are there nearby neighbors or witnesses who can come to your aid if you scream?
You want to live in a safe neighborhood. Listen to your gut and keep looking.
2. Sign, sign, everywhere a sign
Burglars want easy targets and don’t want to make their presence known. If they see warning signs about cameras, a security system, and dogs (whether or not there are any), they’re likely to move on to an easier house.
3. Change up your route
Don’t be a creature of habit. Whether you drive to work, take a bus, jog, or walk the dog, go at different times and go in different directions. Don’t lead a creeper back to your house.
When I leave work, I take different routes every day. Normally I visit my horse after work and there are different ways I can get to the farm. I would notice if I’m being followed, due to the rural area. Traffic is thin.
Worse case scenario, someone following me would think I live at the farm.
It would be hard for someone to track me leaving the farm. At the driveway, sometimes I turn left, other times I turn right. I make a lot of last minute decisions which way to go and always check my rear view mirror.
4. If you’re being followed…
There’s been a couple of times where I’ve kept an eye on a vehicle that’s following me for a long time. Now, it could just be a coincidence…
Or maybe not.
Not too long ago, when I turned my car, the car behind me that I’d been keeping an eye on, also turned. I continued driving and made a plan to turn left on a residential street, and make a couple more turns that would take me to the police station.
Before it came to that, the car behind me turned down another street.
If you ever have any doubts about being followed, head for the police station, pull into their parking lot, and start honking like crazy!
5. Lock the doors
I immediately lock the door behind me when I arrive home.
Even if I have to return to the car to grab more items to bring inside.
And once I know for sure I’m not returning to the car, I lock the security plate that prevents a door from being kicked in. A big thanks to my neighbor who installed them!
6. House alarm
Whether or not a house alarm is monitored by a security company, having a noisy alarm will probably scare of an intruder that is breaking in.
My house alarm saved me!
Unless I’m running back and forth to my car, or immediately going out again, I keep my house alarm set when I’m inside. This has led to a couple of embarrassing moments when I’ve opened a door and then had to scurry to reach the alarm panel to turn it off.
7. Expecting guests?
If the doorbell rings and you’re not expecting anyone, stay still and quiet. Turn off the TV or radio and listen.
Maybe it’s just a Girl Guide selling cookies or a friend who’s in the area and dropped by.
It might seem unfriendly, but stay away from the door and unexpected guests.
8. Personal alarm
I carry a personal safety alarm in my pocket or hold it in my hand while walking.
The one I use is made by Vantamo and comes in different colors. I like it because it’s loud and has a strobe light, and can scare off attackers. The noise and light will alert others in the area that there’s a problem. It’s rechargeable, and apparently one charge will last up to a year. It’s also a key fob, but so far I haven’t put keys on it.
Watch it in action!
9. Car keys ready at night
When walking to your car at night, always have your key fob in your hand ready to unlock the door.
Be alert and ready to press the panic button on the fob.
If your car doesn’t have an alarm, this is a good time to hold a personal safety alarm.
10. Lock the car doors
Once inside the car door, lock all the doors right away.
11. Where’s your purse?
Most women put their purse on the passenger seat beside them. If your door is unlocked or the windows are down, you’re an easy target when stopped at a red light. An intruder can grab it quickly.
Put your purse under your seat or on the floor boards behind you.
I don’t usually carry a purse. My slim wallet is in my pocket or the fanny pack that I’m wearing, not sitting on the seat beside me.
I often take my laptop to work, and the backpack sits on the floor of the backseat, wedged in tight.
12. Pepper spray
Call it pepper spray, dog and coyote spray, or mace, you can buy small canisters with a key ring. I keep mine on my nightstand, but I need to get more in the habit of carrying it with me.
It seems to be out of stock on Amazon right now. Popular brand!
There are other brands available, and Sabre comes in and out of stock, probably being snapped up right now due to the good weather and more people are out walking. Do a search on Amazon for pepper spray for other choices.
13. Keep your phone close
Even when I’m walking around the house, I hang onto my phone or put it in my pocket.
When I go to bed, my phone is on the nightstand. If I forgot to charge it, I plug it into my travel charger that is also on the nightstand, so it’s right there if I need it.
Having an app like Alexa or Siri is helpful if you fall off a ladder or an intruder has grabbed you. Yell at your app to call 911.
14. Leave lights on
As much as I hate wasting energy, I don’t want to become a target if my house looks like no one is home.
I have exterior lights on a timer that I have to keep adjusting as the daylight hours change.
When it gets dark, I keep my kitchen light and a couple of other lights on.
Before I go to bed, I turn on the lights in one of the other rooms. I alternate the room. If someone with ill intent is walking by, hopefully they’ll think someone is awake and keep on moving.
Those are my 14 safety tips for women living alone.
Do you have any safety tips to add to this list?
Published by Cheryl @ The Lifestyle Digs on May 14, 2023.