Owning a home is a wonderful thing, but there are many responsibilities that come with it. Mowing the grass, painting trim, maintaining the roof...the list goes on and on. The last thing you want to worry about is someone breaking in. We hate to admit it, but burglars are out there and they know what they’re doing (more importantly what you're NOT doing). To protect your home from theft, you need to plan ahead and try to look at it from the burglar’s perspective. If you do this, you can lessen your chances of a break in.
Try these 10 theft protection tips:
1. Install high-quality locks on all exterior doors.
This is especially important for new homeowners. The last thing you want to do is use existing locksets from the previous owners. Keep in mind, locks only work when they are set...so make it a routine to check the locks!
2. Choose your neighborhood wisely.
If you’re looking for a new home, be sure to get the scoop on the neighborhoods where you are looking. Spend time scouting the area at different times of the day to get a feel for what goes on. We’re here to help you find the best neighborhood in your price range, so please let us know if we can guide you.
3. Keep your porch lights on at night.
This is important so witnesses and police can easily see your address numbers. Keeping these lights on will also deter burglars from approaching your home.
4. Don’t tempt burglars.
Think twice before you leave valuables such as bikes and grills out in your yard. Leaving these items out in plain site is an easy way to tempt burglars and inform them that you may have other valuable items elsewhere in your home.
5. Install a home security system.
Using an alarm is a great way to deter theft. There are many different companies that provide a variety of security levels so check out your local providers and meet with a representative. Be sure to install window clings and signs to let potential invaders know you're prepared.
6. Don’t hide keys on your property.
This may seem obvious, but many people still do it. Although it may be convenient for friends and family to have access to your home, it’s just too risky. If someone needs access to your home, either give them a key to keep or make arrangements to meet ahead of time.
7. Maintain or remove large shrubs.
Overgrown plant material is a great way for burglars to conceal themselves near a home. Evaluate your landscape each year and prune or remove tall shrubs, especially those near windows and doors.
8. Report suspicious behavior.
The police are around to serve and protect, but they need your help. If you notice suspicious behavior near your home it’s important that you report it. Not only will you help prevent a possible theft at a neighbor’s home, you may also stop the burglar from making your home his next project.
9. Partner with your neighbors.
You don’t have to be best friends with the neighbors, but it’s good to let them know you keep an eye on their property...and that you’d like the same help. This relationship will be one of the best ways to protect your home from theft because your neighbors will see things you probably won’t. Things like suspicious vehicles or behavior may go unnoticed by you, but a neighbor might see it and be able to let you know.
10. Plan ahead for vacations.
It’s a sad truth, but criminals are often watching your home long before you leave for vacation. If possible, hire a house sitter to stay at your home or at least check in each day to pick up the mail. You can also set lights to come on at night to trick those casing your home into thinking someone is still around.
We hope you never have to experience a burglary at your home, but we wanted to share these tips to help you protect your home from theft. What else would you add to the list?
Main image by chanpipat, freedigitalphotos.net