We’re wrapping up the holiday season right now, but it’s never too late to review home safety so you’ll be ready for the new year and all that it brings. Here are four things burglars don’t want you to know about keeping your home safe whether you’re at home or traveling:
1) They know when you’ve been gone for an extended amount of time. Any burglar who is adept at staking out a neighborhood pays close attention to signs that your home may be vacant. Unmowed grass, piled up newspapers, mail in your mailbox, fliers left hanging on the door and dark homes are all signs to burglars that no one is home. When you’re going on a trip, ask a neighbor to get your mail, newspapers and packages and make arrangements for your grass to be mowed while you’re away. New technology even allows you to turn lights on and off remotely which is a step up from light switches on simple timers.
2) They like easy entries. Obviously unlocked doors make the simplest entries and you’d be surprised how many burglaries happen with no forced entry. “Hidden” keys which oftentimes aren’t so hidden at all (faux rocks and keys hidden under mats are obvious hiding spots and not at all safe) provide burglars a quick and easy entry, especially when the entry can be a side or back door that isn’t in plan sight. You should also store ladders and tools out of use of burglars so that second story windows don’t become easy access to your home.
3) They want profitable homes. Burglars want to hit homes that will provide the biggest payout for their effort. To avoid being on their list, don’t advertise your home’s contents for all to see. Avoid posting new or valuable purchases on social media and discard their boxes (especially large ones for TVs and computers) at the dump instead of at the curb waiting for trash pick up.
4) They like to pretend to be someone they’re not. Knowing exactly where entry points and valuables are located saves them crucial time when burglarizing your home later. To prevent this, always know exactly who is entering your home and be wary of solicitors who are difficult to get rid of or want to gain unnecessary access to your home. Also be wary of any repairman or solicitor who asks to use your restroom; burglaries have occurred when bathroom windows are unlocked ahead of time and then revisited later in the evening or at a later time during the week when homeowners are sleeping or aren’t at home.
How do you protect your home from burglaries?