Home Security: Your "must-take" special measures

Panama has the best rating for tourism safety, but "living in a home safely" is another matter altogether. Yes, Panama is one of the safest countries in the Americas, but living here safely requires taking special measures different from the States or Europe.

Fact of Life: Home Robberies are More Common in Latin America including Panama

It is a fact of life that home robberies are common in Panama. Therefore, if you don't speak Spanish and are not familiar with living in Latin America, we recommend living in a condominium with security or in a gated community. This is simply the best way to avoid robberies and break ins.
Even if you live in a secure condo or gated community, the help who come to work for you sometimes are thieves. See below.
That said, there are hundreds of foreigners living happily and safely in single homes in Panama, especially outside Panama City in areas like Boquete. Cities have more crime and Panama City is no exception.

These are some of your must-take measures: At the least, all windows should have bars, the front doors good locks and your home should have someone in it at all times. The best thing to do is get a state-of-art home security system. In Panama City we recommend Alarmas Comerciales. Phone: (507) 278.0967/68.
If you want to go away for a weekend, hire your maid or a friend to stay in your home.

Watch Out: Most home robberies are "inside" jobs. The construction workers remodeling your house, the plumber or even the maid are the first persons the police question if you are robbed. Don't trust people who come into your home so easily unless they have excellent references. And even then, don't leave things out that might be put into a pocket or satchel. In general, be on the watch when you have workers around and don't hire any home workers that do not have a recommendation from someone you know well.