Tips for Improving Your Home Security
Have you ever wondered why a burglar picks one house to rob rather than another? It is not just bad luck on the homeowner’s part. Chances are the burglar picked that home because he saw something that made the home look like an easy mark. Burglars watch what goes on around neighborhoods before they make their moves.
Want to prevent your home from standing out as an easy mark to a burglar? Here are some top tips for improving home security.
Quality Locks make a difference:
Choosing the right door lock setup will ensure that your home is easily accessible to you but stays shut against intruders. Door locks include mechanisms for both doorknobs and deadbolts, and can also include features like keyless entry, Wi-Fi connectivity, or a touchscreen control pad.
Secure ALL Points-of-Entry:
Make sure your doors and windows are locked when you aren’t home. If you have a sliding patio door, an old home security tip is to put a 2×4 in its track if you don’t have a security bar. And, just to be safe, don’t leave anything around that the burglar can climb on to reach 2nd or 3rd story windows, which people have a tendency to leave unlocked.
Build Good Relationships with Your Neighbors:
You may not like your neighbors, but you need them if you want to protect your home from burglars. Nosy neighbors are the number one deterrent to burglars, as it means they’ll likely get caught if they break in and start rummaging around your house. So talk to your neighbors, and agree to look out for anything suspicious. That way, when someone strange tries getting into your house in the middle of the day while you’re at work, your neighbors won’t assume it’s business as usual.
Get a Dog:
Having a dog is a good way to deter a burglar for two reasons:
The burglar doesn’t know if the dog will attack.
A barking dog is going to attract neighbors’ attention.
If you don’t want or cannot have a dog in your home, putting up “Beware of Dog” signs may be enough to make a burglar move along to another house.
Keep an Outdoor Light on at Night:
Burglars want to be as inconspicuous as possible, which is why they hate visibility. They prefer overgrown bushes or tall fences blocking line of sight to windows and doors, so they can enter a home unnoticed. And they hate it when motion-detecting lights alert people to their presence at night. So install some flood-lamps, and expose any ne’er-do-wells that try to approach.
Make it Look Like Someone is Home While You’re Away:
The majority of break-ins happen when burglars think no one is home, like during the workday or while the family is on vacation. A thief’s primary objective in a burglary is to snag something valuable without being noticed, so they tend to avoid homes that look like someone is home. Now, you can’t be home all the time, but you can make it look like you are.
Programmable lights can be set to go on and off at any time of the day. There are TV light simulators that use very little energy, but replicate the glow of a flatscreen. You can turn on smart speakers to play music, radio, podcasts, etc. Most of these things can be programmed or set on timers, but if not, get a plug with a built-in timer so you can set it manually.
Make Your Schedule Irregular:
While some burglars will pick a house and burglarize it on the same day, quite a few cases the neighborhood for a while first. They pay attention to the schedules of people in the neighborhood to identify when people are away from the house. Once they know when your home is empty during the day, they make their move.
If burglars see you leaving and coming home at the same time every day, they will learn your routine. While it’s unlikely you can change your working hours, you may be able to stagger your coming and goings a little, and any unpredictability you can throw into the routine will make burglars wary.
An occasional return home during the day could do the trick, as could having a friend or family member visit the house when no one is home. Even having a neighbor kid mow your lawn when they get home from school can help. Just make the burglar feel like there’s never a time they can guarantee no one will be home.
Your Best Bet: Get a Security System:
The presence of home security cameras and window sensors is the greatest deterrent to thieves. While seeing signs advertising that you have one, or even seeing the cameras might not spook them, a loud alarm going off when they try to break in likely will. Burglars hate having their presence noticed, and alarms ensure just that. Plus, with cameras in the right places, you’ll have plenty of evidence on hand, whether you’re trying to catch the criminal, or just prove to your insurance that you really were burglarized (and would they kindly pay you to replace what was taken, please).
Learn more about how a home security system can help protect your home, your property, and your family.