This post contributed by Katie Laird of Blinds.com

When selecting window shades and coverings, we often make shopping decisions based primarily on style, ease of operation, and energy efficiency. But there is a fourth element that can be easily overlooked when it comes to window treatments: security.

Yes, window shades, blinds and other forms of window coverings are vital when it comes to personal privacy and security. Many prospective thieves (or just the nosy neighbor across the street) may monitor the movement in a person’s home, keep track of when homeowners are home and away, and take stock of their valuable possessions through exposed windows. Here are 3 ways to increase your home’s privacy and security while maintaining the look of your windows.

 

1. Window film

An effective and affordable way to improve the safety and security of your windows is to cut and fit film to the window panes. There are a number of window film adhesives that offer privacy for the home, allowing the sunlight to come in while creating a reflective or shaded look from the exterior. There are even decorative options, from shading color to stained glass artwork. These will impede prying eyes from looking through exposed windows, although shadows and silhouettes will still be visible from the outside when interior lights are on.

If you aren’t as concerned about the visual privacy of your windows, certain window films can be applied to simply strengthen windowpanes from being broken by burglars. The film can be cut to fit any size windowpanes and are typically adhered to panes located near locks on exterior doors, preventing the intrusive hand of a prospective thief from shattering the glass.

 

2. Window shades 

Installing window shades or blinds for privacy and security is another simple and popular solution for homeowners. Shades allow for easy management of light filtration, privacy, and security by shielding your home from the eyes outside.

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When choosing privacy shades, consider how much light filtration you need. For bathrooms or more common areas where you want a combination of security, privacy, and natural sunlight, choosing lighter colors and thinner fabrics for your windows will accomplish both. For highly-trafficked areas like living rooms, dining rooms, and kitchens, cellular shades with a higher opacity will allow some natural light into the home. For bedrooms, shades with less opacity (or even blackout shades) can be used for security as well as better sleeping conditions.

Just remember that fabric shades will absorb moisture and are not recommended for windows inside a shower. Faux wood blinds or shutters are best suited for these windows and can direct light in multiple directions while still giving you privacy.

 

3. Adding security, keeping style

Windows are often a major element of style within the home. Adding coverings to decorative or unique windows, sliding doors, or sidelights may seem like you’re covering up a thing of beauty. But many options exist for keeping the style and character of these special windows while still enhancing the security of your home. Custom blinds, shades, and shutters in a variety of materials and colors can blend in with character-rich windows while protecting your home at the same time.

A wide range of options and opacity allows you to balance security and comfort. While you’re establishing the other safeguards for your home, don’t forget the windows.

BIO: Katie Laird is the Director of Social Marketing for Blinds.com and a passionate home decorator for her family with a love of all things mid-century modern and blue. To learn more about the variety of window shades available, check out the Blinds.com website.

Safe and smart | Home safety