Home security is paramount to the safety of your family and your belongings. You might have a high-end alarm system and an arsenal of weapons to defend yourself, but if you're not home, it's relatively easy for a burglar to break into your house. Even with the best security system money can buy, an experienced burglar can be in and out several minutes before police arrive.

Home security upgrade lock

One of your home's biggest weak points may be its front door frame.

The solution, of course, is to make it as difficult as possible to gain entry to your house. One of the most common smash-and-grab tactics thieves use is to simply kick down the door. It's easier than you might think, given the fact that even strong deadbolts are often anchored to soft pine door frames. Most burglars are not going to bother with the finesse of lockpicking—they're going to use brute force.

Home security upgrade lock

All the locks in the world won't save you if they're anchored to a fragile wood frame.

While observant neighbors might notice someone sneaking around your backyard, most people won't question someone who walks confidently up to the front door. This is especially true if they're clever enough to dress like a delivery driver, pizza guy, or maintenance worker.

Fortunately, there are several easy ways to reinforce your front door and upgrade your home security without breaking the bank. Here's one DIY method that only requires $10 in materials and some time in the home workshop:

Here's another guide from Instructables that shows a similar technique using a plain strip of stainless steel.

Home security upgrade lock

Simple 10- or 16-gauge stainless steel strip and some heavy-duty wood screws will get the job done.

If drilling and mounting a metal plate is a little beyond your comfort zone, there are plenty of other commercially-available door reinforcement alternatives. No matter what you choose, it would be wise to consider the possibility of a front door home invasion and prepare accordingly.

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