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Sponsor: 5 safety tips for living by yourself

More people live alone now than at any other time in history. According to a recent New York Times study in major American cities — Atlanta, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco and Minneapolis — 40 percent or more of all households contain a single occupant. In Manhattan and in Washington, nearly one in two households is occupied by a single person.

Living alone comes with the perks of added freedom, privacy and healthy self-reliance. Living alone can also make it easier to engage in social activities, thus making it almost twice as likely that a single person will be out of their home on a daily basis.

Unfortunately, the benefits of a single occupancy also bring safety and security risks that are staggeringly more common than those who share occupancy. For example, did you know that 49.7 percent of break-ins happen to single people?

That's why our sponsor, SimpliSafe, wanted to share these five helpful tips so you won't need to worry.

1. Invest in technology to keep you safe

Install a home security system to alert you and authorities of suspicious or threatening activity, whether you're home or away. Rest assured that both you and your belongings are safe with 24/7 monitoring and remote management. Don't forget to arm your system and always lock your doors (including when you're home)! This is one of the best ways to deter intruders.

A home security system is a great deterrent to would-be burglars. In fact, the research out of the University of North Carolina, funded by the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation (AIREF), under the auspices of the Electronic Security Association (ESA), reveals 84 percent of burglars said if they were confronted with a home security system they would not attack the home. Even if you live in a low-crime area, you’ll rest easier at night knowing your abode is protected by a monitored home security system.

The solution is our sponsor SimpliSafe. It's an alarm system designed from the ground up to counter the problems with traditional alarms. Other alarm companies charge you more than $40 a month and make you sign a three-year contract. SimpliSafe costs $14.99 a month and has no annual contracts for monitoring. You only pay as long as you want and can cancel anytime.

Beyond monitoring, other alarm companies charge $100 to $500 to install the alarm system, and once it's installed it isn't going anywhere. With SimpliSafe, the only cost you pay is for the hardware, and you can build your own system that fits your needs and budget.

Even better, SimpliSafe can easily move with you from house to house, or even to an apartment. That's because SimpliSafe doesn't require any drilling or complicated installation.

Don't forget that installing an alarm system can save you up to 20 percent on your homeowners insurance, so you will get some of that money back. And if you buy SimpliSafe today, you get FREE shipping, plus a FREE keychain remote worth $25 when you use promo code KIM.

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