Prepper Home Defense
Preparing your shelter before SHTF
Protecting your home from marauders will take some clever planning if you plan to bug-
in immediately following a total catastrophe. Preppers often speculate that new gangs
will form from the surviving ranks. Banding together, these new gangs will go from
house to house to forage whatever they can, taking life and limb.
How will you defend your homestead to safeguard what is rightfully yours? We have
some ideas that go beyond guns and ammunition. Learn to deter, delay and defend
the homestead to fortify your shelter.
How to fortify shelter for a bug-in:
Every home is a man's castle, but a prepper thinks about his home in terms of
fortifying a castle. Here's how to fortify your castle and deter intruders:
- Prioritize your defenses on the right-hand side of your property. Human
instinct is to head in the direction of their dominant hand and since 90% of the
population is right-handed, you know where intruders will attempt first to strike.
Secure the right hand entrances first!
- Create barriers and booby traps. Clever use of barriers and booby traps will
help you impede intruders. The more obstacles, the more chance you have at
attrition (wearing down the enemy). For starters, try: barbed wire, chicken wire,
nail beds, and sand bags. These four elements will provide a strong basis for
1. Barbed wire / razor wire. Barbed wire can provide a good measure of
security though traditionally barbed wire serves to protect grass boundary,
railway or highway. For the surprise element, place barbed wire on the top
inside fences! Hiding them will provide cause an intruder to get a severe cut and
leave. The idea is to make intruders know that you are prepared. They will go
for an easier target because you are prepared with a fortress.
2. Chicken wire. Use a staple-gun to secure chicken wire around the windows
of your home to make it defensible as an obstacle against intruders who would
might throw bottles and rocks to gain access to your building. This technique is a
way to fortify for a bug-in. Further fortify your security with a blackout technique.
- Blackout with plastic bags. Fortify personal security by hiding. Create a
blackout effect by sealing windows with a heavy duty black trash bags
and duct tape to ensure the light around windows and doors doesn't leak
through. If the zombies can't see you have light, then they won't know
you have resources.
3. Bed of Nails. Set out the welcome mat (a bed of nails)! Plywood with a bed of
nails is a surprise element that someone could step into inside of a fenced gate
entrance. Create a bed of nails by driving them into a piece of plywood. Place
the "bed of nails" on the An additional benefit, of you have nails and plywood
around, you'll be able to board up the windows or fix windows that break. Do
everything you can to impede zombies: set up booby traps to wear them down.
Hungry looters will go for easier prey.
- Attack them with thumbtacks. Implore clever use of thumb tacks by
creating an instant "bed of nails." Have a few boxes handy, so you can
throw the thumb tacks at key entryways to your home when SHTF.
Unsuspecting zombies may sustain injuries to their feet. It won't kill them,
but it will deter them just enough enabling you a chance to round up
some more ammo.
4. Sandbags. Sandbags don't take much space and you can fill them with gravel
or dirt when you need it. Sandbags can secure gates and doors from opening
easily helping to stall the intrusion. Sandbags also provide a layer of protection:
the more mass the better to shield against radiation or bullets.
5. Anti-climb spikes. Having a professional install anti-climb spikes if legal. Anti-
climb spikes could provide you with extra peace of mind that intruders won't
easily gain entry to your home. Check with local laws as these are extremely
dangerous and may be highly regulated in your locale.
6. Door jams. Installing a door jam or simple stick in a sliding glass door could
provide just the amount of delay necessary. A good option is a Buddybar Door
Jammer, pictured right. By placing a 2' x 4' between front door and inside steps
or wall could deter a forced entry. Or try a 3" screw into the studs to fortify.
Door jam armour is extremely effective and will provide peace of mind.
7. Bullet proof glass, tempered glass and window film: Extremely committed
preppers install bullet proof glass; however this an expensive option. Fortifying
windows with window film or tempered is a less expensive option. Be sure to
install window film on the inside the window frame, or caulk the edges to the
8. Fireguard spray: You'll be building more fires when SHTF, so you'll need a
measure or protection against flames. Protect your clothing and your hearth
with Fireguard spray, right. Nontoxic and non-carcinogenic -- safe for people and
pets. It's main goal is to prevent fabrics from ignition and spread of fire, so you
can use it on household fabrics, draperies and curtains, upholstery, and other
natural and synthetic materials (with the exception of leather). Interior
furnishings are the number one contributing factor to the swift spread of fire and
smoke within a home, so this may be part of your overall shelter plans to
mitigate threats from marauders on your home fortress.
9. Display a "Beware of Dog" sign (when you don't have a dog). Place also a
big dog dish of water and a big chew toy to imply you have a huge dog.
Intruders will not want to battle a hungry apocalypse dog! I may be just the
incentive they need to go to another home.
NOTE: If you own a dog, don't put up the sign in peaceful times, because
it will be a legal nightmare for you in the event your dog bites someone. It
means that you know you have a vicious dog and that you did nothing to
prevent your dog from biting! Use it only for a world without rule of law.
10. Get some geese. If you have a large property where it's feasible to have
some geese, then have them on your property. They'll make an excellent
11. Mace. Gaining a few valuable minutes to handle an intruder at close range,
mace can help your family protect the homestead. In an extreme situation,
instruct children in your household on the use of mace. In a reasonable way,
even children can defend themselves upon intrusion.
12. Guns and rifles (and the constitution). In a world without rule of law, your
gun is your best peace of mind for security. You may also like to carry the
constitution with you so that you may defend your 2nd Amendment rights.
13. Stock other weapons and improvise. Have an axe or two on hand. An axe
could come in handy to chop a tree to make a barricade. Other clever weapons
to have on hand, a baseball bat. Here is a list of improvised weapons.
14. Have some decoys. If you convince the gang of zombies that all you have is
a few cans of beans, they'll likely be happy and leave with a meal for the
evening. In this way, it looks like you've been fighting to save your last food.
Know that you can talk your way out of anything.
These ideas will get you started. Armed with a few techniques to deter, delay and
defendy our homestead, you will surely find some new and clever ways to guard your
property on your own. To read more detailed strategies, purchase Prepper's Home
Defense, a book by Jim Cobb, pictured at the top of the page. This excellent new book
will help you find security strategies to proect your family by any means necessary.
Consider these clever ideas to protect the homestead to avoid confrontation:
- Hiding: In the event a gang of marauders finds a way on your premises, you
can hide. Many preppers opt for a safe room or underground bunker. An
underground bunker is an expensive option worth considering, and you can
invest in a pricey safe room too, but a safe room doesn't have to be that fancy.
It can be relatively inexpensive to disguise a secret passage in your home to an
attic, garage, closet or space between the walls to hide temporarily. In hiding,
you will avoid confrontation with a group of individuals you may not otherwise
be able to defend yourself against. Deceiving the gang could be as simple as
mounting a large mirror or a small piece of furniture to camouflage the entrance.
Another way to hide is to have a secret escape tunnel to a different part of the
property. In this way, you can have a direct fire of control on the marauders who
have invaded your space. This could be a crawl space or escape hatch from your
Secured and hidden storage is another area to concentrate your prepping
efforts. While many preppers have gun safes, they rarely lock their food when
they should. A hidden food cache in several locations is widely practiced, but
preppers should consider putting a lock and key to #10 cans and food grade
Finally, hiding can also mean you camouflage your person to hide in plain site!
Hiding as a homeless person, for example, is a technique of camouflage (or
"bugging in") where your aim is to look like a "have not." A prepper might use
this strategy to blend in with society in an effort to retrieve a cache of food or
supplies. A prepper might also use this strategy as a sort of an urban ghillie suit
to analyze the civil unrest and assess the situation for bugout or to find allies.
- Distracting and confusing: In the event of civil unrest, a strategy to employ to
confuse and distract looters is to throw useless items on the lawn to make it
appear that the property has already been looted. Broken glass scattered
strategically might also make the property appear previously pilfered.
Here are some other clever ways to deter and distract would be marauders:
- Dog evidence: Place a BEWARE OF DOG sign at the entrance to your home.
Even if you don't own a dog this could be a scare tactic, particularly if you
place a large bowl of water and huge bone at the entrance of the back
yard. This "evidence" may be enough to thwart looters to an easier target
- Other signs to hang: Above top left is a "Nothing Inside Worth Dying For"
sign to make a home look foreboding. Other preppers have suggested
hanging a bio-hazard sign to deter intrusion.
- Spray paint: A prepper might also thwart an attack by using spray paint to
mark a "territory" with gang-like symbols.
These tactics could provide essential and sufficient distraction while a family is thriving
safely inside in a safe room or bunker.
- Safeguarding: To defend your home from looting in the event of civil unrest,
there are several ways you can safeguard.
How to create shelter when you bug out:
Having the forethought to invest in body armor, such as a affordable bullet-proof
vest can enhance preparedness on the defensive strategy. Other non-
conventional tools of self defense might include using Wasp spray or Bear spray
(instead of mace).
Shelter is among the first considerations when you are in survival mode. Being
prepared means securing your shelter in uncertain times. Shelter is of
paramount importance when it comes to wilderness survival. In fact, it's at the
apex of the survival.
The survival rule of three is that you can survive:
- three hours of harsh weather exposure without shelter.
- three days without water.
- thirty days without food.
In the unfortunate event that shelter suffers damage of any kind, the Happy Learn how to build shelter in the wild using Hawke's Special Forces Survival Handbook,
Prepper has a personal "bug out" plan. The basic human instinct of fight or flight
dominates the decision to "bug in" or "bug out."
lower left. In it, the author, T.V. personality and survivalist Mykel Hawke, illustrates
basic survival shelters for various scenarios. It's a gorgeous book, well laid out with
loads of valuable information. It's just about the best $10 a prepper can spend on
Happy Preppers believe that the happiest people on earth will be the ones who've prepared
should the unthinkable occur. Perhaps you're a Happy Prepper too! We're happy to hear
your prepping ideas and link to your site. Please drop us a note on Twitter at
Remember, our family survival system is free! Learn how to store food, water, fuel sources,
survival medicines, sanitation, and self defense. See more at www.happypreppers.com
------------------------------------------------- Revised 7.26.13
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