Rural Living: Essential Safety Tips for Living in Secluded Areas

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by Dave Artman

Rural living provides a picturesque life: Quiet surroundings, wildlife all around, forested landscapes, and adventure abound. But with this idyllic life comes a dark downside—this seclusion can make you a prime target for a home robbery or assault.

It may be the last thing you think of, but having an isolated property can make it perfect for aggressors and robbers. Maybe it’s because your nearest neighbors are a mile away or your home is surrounded by a thick tree-line; perhaps your local police station is 30 minutes away or your home is poorly lit and secluded. Whatever the particular reason, your home can be easily targeted. For this reason, you should take the necessary measures to ensure both yourself and your home are protected while living the rural life.


For Your Home

There are several things you can do to keep your home more secure when you live in the country.

Regularly inspect your property.


You might not spend much time walking around all of your property if you own a lot of it. It’s understandable, but it might make your property a target for unwanted trespassers or possible surveillance equipment. Consider inspecting your property on a regular basis, walking the grounds to check for footprints and discarded items that shouldn’t be there or for any technology or possessions that were not placed there by you.

Monitor your property with video security.

Worried about protecting your home both while you’re away and even while you’re inside? A 24-hour video security system can help to closely monitor your property at all times, keeping an eye out for any unwanted trespassers or possible scoundrels.

Rural properties benefit from the installation of motion-activated cameras, which will begin recording whenever movement is captured. Both effective and convenient, they allow you to monitor your home at all times, whether it’s a UPS driver delivering a package, a pair of religious folks visiting your home, or, at worst, a trespasser approaching your home from the woods. Whatever the case, you can always capture a recording of visitors, ensuring you have evidence if anything ever goes wrong.


Get a smart-lighting system.

A great way to increase your home’s security is to install a smart lighting system. While these often come in different variations, your best bet is to install one that features both indoor and outdoor capabilities. These systems work in multiple ways, but their primary benefits include some of the following:

  • Home lighting systems can be controlled by your phone, via an app, which allows you to manage lights even while you’re not at home.
  • Lights can be set on timers, allowing for in- and outside-home lights to be turned off and on at specific times of day.
  • If you don’t want to go so high-tech, some lights, dependent on the bulb and circuitry, can be turned on when triggered by detected motion, which can scare off unwanted visitors when triggered.

Get an in-home security system.

Besides securing your property with video and lighting systems, you can protect your house even further with an in-home security system. Watched by a contracted company, you can install this system in your home and activate it each day prior to leaving your home or heading to bed. In the event that someone attempts to enter your home, the security system will be triggered, which will notify your contracted security provided, who will then contact local police if they believe they are needed.

Think of it as a precaution against the worst. While it might not be a foolproof method, it’s a great way to protect your home against possible break-ins. Most companies provide a sign that can be placed outside of your home, which alerts visitors that your home is equipped with a security system, which might be enough to deter a potential assailant or robber.

Have self-defense weapons, both non-lethal and lethal.

If anyone is able to break into your home, you want to be sure that you can protect yourself against them. To ensure this, you should have a self-defense weapon stored within your home. Whether it’s a legally owned gun or taser gun, there should be a weapon around that can be used as a means of defense.

The primary benefit of having one of these within your home is that is doesn’t always have to be used—simply alerting an intruder that you have a weapon can be enough to scare them off. If you decide to store a weapon within your home, be sure to store it in a safe location—one that cannot be easily accessed by others. This is especially important for homes with young family members, as you do not want them interacting with such weapons at any time, especially when you are not around.


Have a survival kit.

While you’re worried about intruders and aggressors, the natural elements might blindside you. A powerful weather storm can lead to serious home damage, and you might end up stranded if your home is stripped of power, flooded, or snowed in.

To protect against severe weather incidents, it’s recommended that you store an extensive survival kit within your home. This is a kit meant to be stored within your home, filled with all of the essential items you will need to survive an unexpected event. Items can include heavy blankets, extra clothing, dried food, bottled water, a water purifier, a weapon and ammunition, and so much more.

This survival kit should never be used unless it is completely necessary. Otherwise, items can be regularly added to make the kit more effective, helping to protect you against the worst possible conditions.

Take Care of Yourself

When living in a rural area, you’re more or less on your own. While there may be amenities and police protection within traveling distance of your home, they might be far enough away that they’re not as accessible as they should be. You can secure your home and protect yourself with proper planning and foresight.

About Dave

Dave Artman is the founder and CEO of The Home Security Superstore. Every month he uses his expertise to produce content focused around the six important areas of personal well being; security, self-defense, surveillance, spy, safety and survival. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking and all things outdoors.

Guest Contributor

Guest Contributor

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  • Another point: Never go out on your property unarmed.

    Whether a threat from a two or four-legged varmint, always be able to defend yourself.

    I promised hubs that I will always carry when I go out, even if it’s just to do chores.

  • Dogs are the best security system but they won’t do much good if they are curled up in bed with you. Two good-sized dogs that remain outside at night can often deter prowlers. A smaller inside dog will usually let you know that someone is too close to the house.

    • Three days ago the power company sent out tree trimmers to the neighbors place. They cut so many trees that I could see my neighbors place about 800 meters away. He has an old house he uses for weekends. I watched the tree trimmers from my place, and they went all over his farm, well away from the power lines, they looked like they were trying to steal things. I started to record them from over the river, they noticed me recording them and they started swearing at me. I kept a good 100 meters between the six of them, and I had a weapon ready.

      I didn’t call the police, there is no point, in the past I’ve called the police because a car rolled and a girl was missing. I called on Friday morning, they called on Sunday afternoon and asked if they still needed to come out. The neighbors called and it took a week for them to call back and say they aren’t coming.

      The point is that out in the country when people think they are away from it all, they behave very differently. In a town the police would have been called on them. The police are functionally useless when you are two hours away from them.

  • We used to have an excellent driveway alarm. Nothing came up it where he didn’t bark. As he has aged out he has given the duty back to me. Not so bad except I’m partially deaf..

    I would like to have an efficient perimeter and home alarm but from what I see many of them are cell dependent. We live in the tall trees and cell service is very poor.

    • Me, check out the Dakota wireless murs driveway alarms.
      I’m ordering one of these for my driveway next paycheck. The system is expandable also.

  • If you can watch your property on your phone then savvy computer geek types with computers can watch it too. Electronic monitors can be listened in on too. If your power goes out so will most if not all your technology. It’s a double edged sword.

  • A number of good advice in this post.
    Unfortunately, a lot depends on a reliable electricity connection.
    A neighbor down the road has a security camera posted on a electrical pole. I can hit a spent 12ga shot shell from 100yds with a .22LR from the unsupported prone with a 90% hit rate. That camera is a bit bigger.
    Dogs are great! But still my wife can and has come home and the dogs not even notice until she is not only in the door but pouring herself a glass of wine.
    Point is, there is no 100% full proof solution.
    Adjust accordingly.

    • Our dog doesn’t bark when we come home. Nor even when our kids come to visit, even though that is pretty infrequent. But he roars when a stranger pulls in the driveway. He’s not dumb nor is he inattentive. He seems to have figured out the difference between family and strangers, and reacts appropriately to each category. I only wish I knew how to tell if other dogs have that ability. Perhaps we should clone him?

  • All good advice. Living as some of us do is both an advantage and a disadvantage. We are mostly out of harm’s way, but if targeted, more vulnerable due to the isolation. My wife and I have discussed our possible vulnerabilities as well as when we might be the most vulnerable. Its when we first arrive home after being out somewhere. Its easy to be distracted when bringing home a load of groceries to only be ambushed by someone waiting, hidden outside, to catch you unawares. We use tactics to minimize that vulnerability that I will not go into. Checking your property over regularly is also important. Once you are familiar with your property you will begin to notice any changes quickly, like where someone might have set up to watch your house. I would also recommend good intrusion alarms installed along avenues of approach that warns you of movement in those areas 24/7.

  • Cameras are an excellent deterrent. I’ve had people get all the way to the house and see the cameras then try to back up hundreds of feet trying to reduce their chance of identification.

    Cameras mostly help you after the fact. Few people can afford to watch them all the time and even fewer can afford truly smart systems to do it automatically.

    Most people enjoy their freedom. If they think the risk is too great for the reward then they don’t do it. Therefore it is imperative to make the probabilities of riches low and the successful continued freedom low. Don’t give them a reason to come looking and don’t give them a reason to think they’re getting away with it.

  • I’m in the suburbs now, but when I lived in the country. Back woods of Montana, a flock of geese was my alarm system and first line of defense. Many a time the honking of both car horns and geese brought me to the door. If friend, a scattering of grain was enough to call them off. Strangers had to state their business before they were allowed to leave their vehicles. Those geese chased off bears and coyotes too. I’ve thought of getting a couple here, but city regs prohibit livestock.

  • I will have to agree that dogs are great! I have two that bark at anything moving except me or hubby! Can’t always see what the heck they see but that’s okay!
    It’s good to keep things cleared away from your home that intruders could hide behind/in. Leaves a clear line to shoot if needed as well.
    I love the idea of geese! Those can be some nasty boogers that just don’t quit!
    Don’t advertise that you have stuff. Being the gray man here is good.
    Vary routines so if someone is watching, you will not be completely predictable.
    And one last small tidbit, if you have automatic garage doors, when you leave, watch the door until it is completely down. Good idea to be aware when you are leaving and it is going up as well. Things and/or people can slip in or out quickly.
    Just my two cents worth 🙂

  • Just as Prohibition in the 1920s made bootlegging liquor so profitable that gangsters like Al Capone made millions — and had no hesitation about killing anyone who got in his way — the federal war on drugs that started in the 1970s created similar issues, and rural areas were not left alone.

    In the pre-internet era of the 1970s my father spotted some lights flashing from an upstairs windows one night in a rented house a couple of miles from his farm. He also saw flashing lights seemingly replying from a light aircraft. Clearly something was out of place in that area.

    So the next day he drove up to the county sheriff’s office to describe what he saw. Two days later he was out in one of his fields, on foot and about an eighth of a mile from the road. A pickup pulled up on the road, parked, and a man got out, lifted up his rifle and planted a bullet in the dirt at my father’s feet.

    My father, thinking quickly, tried waving back at the shooter to let him know his message was received and that no further trouble was intended. It was clear that the drug runners had already planted a mole in the county sheriff’s office.

    Since my father was well into his retirement years (but still working that farm), he decided that being up against an organized mob of unknown size like that was a really bad idea, and decided to sell out and move to another state where his kids had already located.

    The point is that good watch dogs, home defense weapons, locks where appropriate and all the common sense in the world can only defend against some things. There are times when “getting out of Dodge” (or not moving there in the first place) may be your only best strategy.


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