We would argue that, no matter if you’re in the EP field or not, a home invasion is one of the most harrowing experiences anyone can go through. But according to security experts, there are quite a few tactical home defense practices that can make you feel safe.
Depending on what you’re comfortable with, and what kind of equipment you have, you can use either active or passive practices. Of course, using a mix of both is always the best choice, along with some risk assessments beforehand.
As protection professionals, we pride ourselves on advance work and preparedness. I always say, “it’s not ‘what’ do we do, but ‘when’ do we do it.” It’s our job to think through all possible scenarios and create a plan of action for each. This way, we know exactly what to do and the only question is when to do it. Lack of proper planning leads to a delay in your reaction or worse, the possibility of freezing up under pressure. The theory same applies to home defense.
I always liked the Latin adage: Si vis pacem, para bellum.
It means: If you want peace, prepare for war.
You should prepare for the worst, and expect the best… If you are well prepared, mentally and physically, you are more likely to make the right decisions under stress and come out on top.
Let’s take a look at all the active and passive tactical home defense practices you have at your disposal. That way, you can decide on your own what works best for you, your family, and your principals.
In simplest terms, active tactical home defense practices are those that have direct physical effects on intruders. These would usually include guns for self-defense, lethal or non-lethal weapons, as well as specially trained guard dogs.
Using Firearms for Tactical Home Defense
Using guns to defend your home is arguably one of the most effective ways to scare someone off your premises. But (and this is a big one) you should only be using guns and other firearms if you have proper training.
That is to say, you know how to shoot, clean, and properly store your weapons. Otherwise, bringing a gun into a home is extremely dangerous, and can end in death.
So with that out of the way, let’s talk about some of the weapons that will prove useful in tactical home defense.
If you’re looking to buy a shotgun for your home defense, we recommend going for a tactical one, rather than one for hunting. Find a model with a barrel that’s between 18 and 20 inches because it’ll make the weapon more maneuverable.
Also, you should get a shotgun with a pump and semi-automatic actions because they’re faster than other models. It should also have a capacity of 4+1 at least, but you can also get something with 7+1.
With that said, some of the best shotguns that go hand-in-hand with tactical defense include:
Handguns are a staple in many homes across the world, and more often than not, their main purpose is to protect against home invasions. Even though they’re the toughest to shoot, they’re still pretty easy to conceal, unlike shotguns and rifles.
If you want to use handguns in your tactical home defense, expect to do a lot of practice. Learning how to shoot a handgun, especially in a stressful situation, is an extremely difficult task, and one that not a lot of people can successfully pull off.
Some of the most common handguns that you’ll find in homes are:
If you’re not comfortable handling a firearm or keeping it in your home, there are alternate solutions. For one, pepper spray is an extremely effective deterrent, and it’s a good tool to drive out invaders. Even though it might not completely incapacitate someone, it’ll be more than enough to diminish their ability to fight back.
Another option you could consider is having a specially trained guard dog to protect the home. Oftentimes, even an untrained dog’s bark is enough to scare someone off. But having a fur missile protecting a home is invaluable. Of course, you could take care of the training yourself, or get one from a special breeder/training facility.
Unlike active practices, passive ones include anything that could slow an invader down when entering your home. More importantly, the right methods can prevent entry and make a home a less appealing target altogether.
Windows, Doors, and Fences
When talking about perimeter security, the first things that always come to mind are fences and potential entry points, like doors and windows. The reason you’ll need to incorporate all these things in your tactical home defense is that the best approach is a layered one.
Depending on the threat level, you should consider having a security officer patrol the area or a guard standing by. Also, you need to think about the type of fence you want to install, like a chain link, and using reinforced windows and doors.
A safe room is one of those things that, if done right, can stop literally any threat dead in its tracks. It allows you, and anyone you’re protecting, to take refuge and wait out the treat until it either ends or the backup gets there.
For a safe room to work, it needs to be located somewhere conveniently in the house, so that you can reach it before the invaders. Also, it needs to have a communication system, as well as be hardened in case you lose power. You have to reinforce it, and stock it up with weapons, medical supplies, and other important gadgets.
There’s always talk in the EP industry about which home security technology is actually worth the money, and which is glorified junk. Regardless of personal preferences, the fact is that these security systems are efficient deterrents when it comes to home invasions.
Tactical Home Defense Practices to Avoid
The first rule of home defense is to ensure that you’re not the one providing the burglar with tools or weapons they could use against you. Keep all weapons and tools locked away, somewhere you can only reach them.
Even when you’re home, keep doors and windows locked, especially if you fear threats. Teach the entire household and staff basic safety rules, and instruct the younger members not to open doors to strangers.
You should also always have alternative escape routes in case some have been compromised. No matter what, your primary goal is to ensure everyone’s safety, and avoid conflict as much as possible.
When it comes to home defense, many people buy firearms, go home and place them in a bedside drawer. They never go to the range, they just let them sit and collect dust. They don’t train, they don’t study law, and they don’t mentally prepare themselves for a fatal self-defense situation. I highly recommend reading the book, On Killing written by Lt Col Dave Grossman. It really helps you develop the proper mindset for a lethal encounter, simply training with your weapon has proven not to be good enough.
Knowing some basic tactical home defense practices can make the difference between life and death. Whether it’s having strategically placed weapons around the home, getting a guard dog, or creating a safe room, you need to do what it takes to ensure everyone’s safety.
When it comes to home defense, my personal favorite is the DP-12 shotgun. It’s a double barrel bullpup style pump shotgun with 2 trigger pulls for every one pump. It holds 16 rounds (8 per magazine tube) plus 2 in the chamber. A pump shotgun serves as a great deterrent to a home invader, the unmistakable sound it makes when you rack the fore grip echoes through the air. It’s a universal sound that does not need to be translated, regardless of the language you speak.
If you want to learn more about active shooter scenarios, the best security tools, or how to protect yourself from scams, we can help.
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