Home Security and Personal Safety Resource Guide for Single Women

October 26th, 2021

Home Security and Personal Safety Resource Guide for Single Women

Home Security and Personal Safety Resource Guide for Single Women

Women, especially single, unmarried, or divorced women, are disproportionately affected by stalking as well as violent and serious crimes, making women who live alone more at risk within their own homes. In fact, out of every 1,000 people, 21.1 women experienced a violent crime while 8.1 women experienced a serious violent crime. The most targeted age group are women ages 18 through 24 years old for both violent crimes and serious violent crimes. 

While marital status does seem to play a role in the average occurrence of violent crime, it is most likely due to the fact that women who are married seem to have more access to home security systems and safe neighborhoods. Interestingly enough, household income seems to be an important factor when analyzing the occurrence of attacks and violent crime. Statistics show that low-income households are at an increased risk of violent crime. Most of these crimes are perpetrated by people the victim knows or has known in the past.

Home Security and Personal Safety Resource Guide for Single Women

Stalking, in particular, is one of the most common crimes reported against single women. Since most stalking victims are also victims of domestic violence and abuse, stalking is the abuser’s way of holding power and control over the victim’s life. Even though stalking is considered a crime, not all states classify stalking as a felony if it is the first offense. As a single woman living alone, it is important to learn how to protect yourself and know how to take all necessary precautions against violent offenders. 

Considerations When Buying a Home

If you are a single woman that does not feel comfortable in your current home then it is time to find a new place to live. Whether you are a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned real estate specialist, finding a home that is safe from violent crime should be a priority during your home search. Before buying a home, it might be a good idea to figure out what the neighborhood is like and what surrounding homes are like in the area that you are looking to buy. Since location is one of the most important factors when buying a home, finding an area with a low crime rate will help ensure your future safety. 

Make sure to ask yourself:

  • What are the violent crime statistics for the area?

  • Do you feel safe in the area?

  • Is the home or neighborhood located in a statistically dangerous part of the city or state?

  • Have other female-identifying people experienced dangerous situations or attacks in the area?

  • Is there an active Neighborhood Watch Association? 

Since the crime rate is just one of the many things to look for when buying a house, you might want to consider checking out new construction homes for sale. While there may be many pros and cons of buying a new construction home, having access to safe and top amenities are a big plus for single women. If you are selling a home, sometimes the neighborhood or crime rate can also affect the value of a home as well.

If buying or renting a property in a large urban area, access to safe public transport and the safety of surrounding pedestrian areas add another layer of security risks for women living alone. Not only do amenities and different property types have a direct correlation to lifestyle but they can also have an impact on the level of safety and security in a neighborhood or surrounding area.

A women living alone who may need a Home Security System for additional safety precautions for single women who are living alone

General Security Advice 

Even though living alone can come with many advantages, there are also a fair amount of challenges to face, especially for women. The good news is that these challenges are not stopping women from buying a home of their own since 53.2% of single homebuyers are female. Due to this, it is no surprise that having a safe and secure home environment is necessary for buyer satisfaction. If you are living alone then one of the best ways to ensure that you are well protected is by creating a home safety checklist

Top safety tips that should be in this checklist include: 

  1. Getting to know your neighbors

While you do not necessarily need to become best friends with your neighbors, at least make the effort to introduce yourself and get to know them. Having trustworthy neighbors are great if you are going out of town and need someone to watch over your house or if you want to join a Neighborhood Watch Association.

  1. Investing in a home security system

There are tons of home security systems on the market right now to choose from. Most security systems come with multiple handy features and are relatively affordable to meet any budget. This is a great investment if you are living alone and want to protect your home against burglars and intruders.

  1. Installing smart lights or motion-activated lights

This is a great way to keep your home safe and secure at all times even when you are not there. By installing smart lights and plenty of outdoor lighting, be able to deter break-ins. There are a large variety of high-quality brands of smart lights available to choose from.

  1. Always lock the door

Even if you invest in a home security system, it is still best to keep the doors locked at all times. By keeping the doors locked, even if you are inside of the home, easily ensure that no one can sneak in when you least expect it.

  1. Consider adopting a dog

If you were looking for an excuse to adopt a furry friend then this is your sign. Dogs are not only a great companion to adventure with and come home to, but most dogs are great at protecting you and their home. Some breeds are more protective than others so it might be a good idea to do some research beforehand before heading to the closest animal shelter.

Outdoor security risks can also pose a threat to your overall safety and wellbeing. Make sure to remove or trim any climbable trees that are located near windows and balconies. Plus, make note of any blind spots in your yard by trimming bushes or trees that obscure windows  On the other hand, some homeowners might prefer the extra privacy that bushes and trees provide. 

In order to prevent crime in your neighborhood and ensure a safe living environment, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and to create an action plan in case of an emergency situation. By fostering a safe community, crime can be prevented and residents can be protected. Make sure to report any suspicious activity in the neighborhood and be vigilant about people coming and going near your home. If you are planning on being away from your home for extended periods of time, ask a friend or neighbor to check up on your house when you are gone. 

Burglar entering home through window using a crow bar in an attempt to do harm

Safety at Home While Dealing With Stalking and Leaving a Dangerous Relationship

Stalking can be defined as the unwelcome pursuit of a person that causes fear, death, bodily injury, or severe emotional distress to an individual. Stalking is scary and is often an indicator of assault or other forms of violence. Sadly, millions of women are stalked every year, and about 66% of female victims are stalked by current or past partners. Younger age groups are at a higher risk of stalking behavior and in some cases can lead to the murder of the victim, or emotional and financial instability. Since 81% of women who are stalked by a current or former intimate partner also experience physical assault, leaving a dangerous relationship can be difficult.

Follow these safety tips for stalking victims in order to stay safe:

  • Contact the police 

  • Get a restraining order

  • Talk to trusted friends, neighbors, work personnel, the homeowners association, and the Neighborhood Watch Association

  • Change all locks and remove spare keys

  • Change mailing address and secure a PO box instead 

  • Keep your address confidential

  • Change your routine 

  • Get a new phone number 

  • Turn off your location 

  • Watch what you do online 

  • Do not travel alone

Advice for Personal Safety

Being aware of your surroundings and the people around you is the first step towards ensuring your own personal safety. Even if you are not being stalked or leaving a violent relationship, it is important as a single woman to always stay alert and trust your instincts. 

Follow these personal safety tips: 

  • Take a self-defense class

  • Have a safe place in mind in case of an emergency

  • Carry a personal defense item such as mase spray 

  • Avoid dark staircases, alleyways, elevators, or any other areas where you can be easily isolated or cornered 

  • Give the impression that you are calm and confident 

  • Be prepared for anything 

  • Eliminate opportunities that make you a target

  • Be aware of what information you broadcast on social networking sites 

The more steps that you take to guarantee your safety, the less dangerous situations that you will find yourself in.

Home alarm and security system that helps single women stay safe when living alone

Advice For Single Mothers Living Alone 

Being a mother is hard, let alone a single mother. As a mom, your top priority is the safety and wellbeing of your children. No matter the age of your children or how many you have, living alone as a single mother can be difficult. Unfortunately, single mothers whether divorced, separated, or widowed, are at a high risk of violent crime. Luckily, mature divorced women tend to have more access to home security systems to protect their homes from potential criminals. Divorced women are also more likely to have older and grown-up children in the home to help protect them which may lower the chance of violent crime. Women with children that are separated from their husbands have a 39.5% chance of being a victim of violent crime. 

In these types of situations, it is imperative to teach your children to not give out important personal information such as names, addresses, phone numbers, workplace information, or your family schedule. Make sure to watch out for suspicious and dangerous activity in your neighborhood and alert your child’s school and teachers if you are experiencing stalking or an abusive past partner. 

Places To Go When You Must Leave Your Home For Safety

A home is a place that an individual should feel safe and protected. Everyone has a right to feel safe and secure in their own home, but if that is not the case then there are some resources and places available to seek help from. If you find yourself in a situation where you must leave your home, reach out to the authorities or a local organization. Leave your home and find safety at women’s and children’s shelters, local domestic violence programs, shelters, or women’s residential services. 

Resources and Hotlines

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Ryan Fitzgerald

Ryan Fitzgerald

Hi there! My name is Ryan Fitzgerald, and I am a REALTOR®. My goal is to help you learn more about real estate through our Real Estate Blog! Hopefully, you enjoyed the above blog post and it found a way to provide help or value to you. When you're ready to buy or sell a home of your own let us know here. Please feel free to join the conversation by dropping us a comment below.