Our in-house security expert weighs in on the best place to put security cameras around the house.
Did you know that 2.5 million burglaries are reported in the U.S. every year, almost 66% of which are home invasions? That’s why you need to have a smart surveillance system to secure your home.
Before you can determine the best places to put home security cameras, you need to identify the weak spots in your home that need to be secured against a breach.
As a security expert with 30 years of field experience, I have investigated my fair share of break-ins. I can confidently state that there are certain common blind spots in every home that are always vulnerable to thieves.
So, you need to do your research thoroughly and find out the best places to put security cameras in your home.
According to the data compiled by jsu.edu, most burglaries occur between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., when the homeowners are away at work or school. Research also indicates that most burglars live within 2 miles of their target and may even know their victims by name and face, if not personally.
Having a break-in at your home can be a traumatizing experience unless you can take affirmative steps to secure your home against future thefts or burglary attempts.
What are the Most Common Entry Points for Thieves/Burglars?
Research also shows that most home invasions happen during the summer months, July and August, when families are away on vacation.
Here are the most common points of entry for break-ins:
- 34% of burglars invade your home via your front door or windows. Most burglars target single, independent homes, particularly the middle ones, as corner houses are visible from the street.
- Another common entry point is an unlocked first-floor window with a climbable window or sheds nearby. This makes it essential to secure your windows.
- Apart from your front door, 22% of burglaries also report thieves entering through the back door or French doors that open outwards.
- In several cases, intruders also use the garage door or storage shed to break in.
- 4% of cases also reported the burglar entering through a basement door or window.
Pro Tip: Do not leave a spare key outside your home in a very obvious spot. Always remember to place it inside whenever you go away on a trip or vacation.
Now that we know the vulnerable points that need constant surveillance, let’s see the things you need to keep in mind before determining the best places to put cameras around house.
Things to Know Before Placing Your Home Security Cameras
What are the best places to mount security cameras for maximum coverage?
You should place your security cameras high up in corners that offer you the widest view of the entire room.
Pro Tip: Corners are your best friends when it comes to home security as they maximize your line of vision.
What is the perfect height at which to place your security cameras, both indoors and outdoor?
Aim for a height of 8 to 10 feet when looking for the best place to put security cameras at home. You can cover a larger area from a greater height, making it harder to steal or even spot your cameras.
Pro Tip: Many people seek to monitor their outdoors with indoor cameras, but motion detection cameras do not work through windows. Always use outdoor cameras for exterior surveillance.
Should your security cameras be hidden or visible?
In my opinion, there is no clear answer to this question. Keeping your security cameras visible can deter many burglars.
However, I have heard several burglars say that the presence of cameras led them to target a specific house as it indicated that there were valuables to protect inside.
Pro Tip: It’s always best to place your cameras somewhere out of sight to avoid drawing attention to them.
Should Cameras be battery-operated or wired?
Battery-operated cameras (also come with rechargeable batteries) need to be checked and maintained regularly but can be placed far apart, while wired ones have limited range as they need to be connected to an electric source.
Pro Tip: Battery-operated home security cameras are great for outdoor buildings and yards, while wired ones are best for indoor use.
What are the best places for security cameras to avoid reflection or glare?
You need to ensure that your cameras do not catch any glare from the sunlight or any window panes by checking the footage at different times of the day and adjusting your placement accordingly.
Pro Tip: It’s always better to place outdoor cameras in semi-protected areas, somewhere they will be protected from the elements and the direct sunlight that can wash out your footage.
Are the best places to mount security cameras near your valuables?
Placing a camera near your safe or jewelry drawers can counter-fire by alerting robbers to their location.
Pro Tip: Opt for covering common entryways over any specific areas to avoid drawing attention to your valuables.
What are the Best Places to Put Cameras Around the House
Now, let’s identify the best places to mount security cameras around your home.
Well-placed outdoor security cameras can help prevent a break-in, especially with a responsive alarm and monitoring system.
Best Spots for Outdoor Cameras
- Front Door and Windows: As mentioned above, most thieves break in through the front door and windows. Place your security camera at a hidden vantage point where you can get a clear shot of your front door.
- Back and Side Doors: The same goes for your back and side doors, the cameras need to have a clear view of your doorways to capture anyone trying to enter.
- Garage/Driveway: It’s a good idea to place an outdoor camera at a high angle so that it catches any intruders in your driveway or any attempts to enter your home through your garage door.
- Back and Front Yards: As there are multiple entry points into any home, your front and back yards are also among the best places for home security cameras.
- Tool Shed or Any Detached Buildings: It’s also advisable to have cameras monitoring your detached storage/tool shed as they can be targeted by burglars, too.
Pro Tip: Most outdoor cameras have infrared or night vision that captures images in the dark. However, adding outdoor lighting to your exterior entry points can help you get much clearer footage in case of a break-in.
Best Places for Indoor Cameras
Having identified the best places to put cameras around house; let’s see the critical vantage points for surveillance inside.
- Main Staircase/Hallway: As mentioned above, most burglars enter through your front door or window. You need an indoor camera that covers your main hallway and staircase.
- Living Room and Kitchen: Your living room and kitchen are some of the high-traffic areas in the home that contain several expensive appliances. It’s also a common habit to leave your laptop, purse, or other valuables here. Cameras placed here will capture anyone moving across your ground floor.
- Study: A study or home office is also often targeted during a robbery as it contains expensive devices like computers, the main home safe, and even arms/ ammunition.
- Upper Hallway: If the burglar moves upstairs to look for valuables like jewelry, watches, and cash, you need to place cameras to capture them in the upper hallway.
- Basement: Basements are usually used to store extra knick-knacks or as extra living space. They usually have back doors and windows for ventilation that can be a convenient entry point for burglars.
So, it becomes important to add your basement to the list of best places for security cameras.
Pro Tip: Get indoor security cameras with privacy shields that are controlled via your smartphone to keep your private moments private.
Where Not to Place Security Cameras
While identifying the best places to put security cameras at home, it’s also crucial to know which areas to avoid.
Bedrooms and Bathrooms
Bedrooms and bathrooms are private spaces that really should not have any cameras installed. Even if your valuables are kept in these rooms, placing a security camera inside would be a major violation of your family’s privacy, especially if your cameras are hacked.
Several federal and local laws expressly prohibit the placement of cameras that survey your neighbor’s property or even a small section of it. Once you have finalized the best places for security cameras, check the footage to ensure that none of them are recording anyone else’s private property.
Bonus Tips For Extra Security
Here are a few more tips you must keep in mind while deciding the best places for home security cameras:
Eliminate All Blind Spots
Once you have installed your cameras, review the footage for any blind spots and reposition the cameras if required.
Define Your Budget
When it comes to home security cameras with advanced features, the sky’s the limit as the market is constantly flooded with advanced models.
So, it’s crucial to set a budget before putting up your home security cameras.
See which spots you have to cover, how many cameras you will need, and what will be the cost of installation. Usually, indoor cameras cost less than outdoor ones, $100 as opposed to $200 or more. You will have to factor all this in while deciding the no. of indoor and outdoor cameras for your home security system.
Clean Your Outdoor Cameras Regularly
Your outdoor cameras are at higher risk of being stolen or damaged as they are exposed to the elements outside, including harsh weather conditions, animals, and even vandalism.
You need to take extra care while placing your outdoor cameras and also clean or maintain them regularly. In case you are looking for some advice on mailbox security cameras, I did a post on the same.
Get a Guard Dog
In my experience, nothing deters intruders like a guard dog. Several former burglars themselves have confessed to avoiding homes that have dogs as they raise the alarm pretty quickly and loudly.
DIY vs. Professional Installation
Once you have identified the best places to put security cameras at home, the next big question is, do you install them yourself or hire professionals?
Modern security cameras record footage and store it in cloud servers provided by the security companies. Ring, one of the top-rated security companies, has also started working with the local police to report and prevent break-ins.
While your security camera feed is available on smart devices, it’s better to have additional security features like an alarm system, video storage, etc. You can also go for advanced features like facial recognition technology, etc.
Arlo, Ring, and Nest are some of the top-performing security companies out there.
|Pros of Calling Professionals||Pros of DIY|
|Trained technicians ensure complete coverage.||No need to invite strangers into your home.|
|Saves Time||Saves Money|
|Carry out periodic upkeep and maintenance.||You need to remember to carry out regular checks, change batteries, etc.|
You have now learned about the best place to put security cameras to defend your home.
Follow all the points above and adapt them to your home’s specific needs or situation.
So, where do you plan to install security cameras in your home? Let us know in the comments below.
I have been a security guy throughout my life. For the last 30 years, I have been making homes safer and hence, putting people at ease. Even on the other side of age, I get fascinated by how technology and simple hacks can make a whole lot of difference to the overall security of the house.