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Tips to Prevent Home Break-ins

Contrary to common belief, most home burglaries occur in broad daylight, while people are at work, in school, or running errands. Property crimes also tend to spike during the warm season, when most people are away on vacation. The majority of burglars have quick in-and-out plans that do not usually take more than 10 minutes to be put into practice. Accordingly, the more layers of security you successfully apply to your home, the more you can slow down property criminals lurking around your neighborhood, about to target you next. To come to your support, we have prepared a series of tips on how to protect your home without a security system that, combined, should give you enhanced protection and more peace of mind.

The Best Home Burglary Prevention Tips:

1. Search for Vulnerable-Looking Spots Around the House

Get ready to walk into the shoes of a potential burglar assessing your home's vulnerable spots and weaknesses. Walk around your house and carefully inspect every possible entry point via windows, doors, or the door connecting your garage to your house. Do the same with the shrubs underneath the windows and any tools and yard furniture that could ease a burglar’s way into your home. Once all the risks are identified, it’s time to act:

  • If the bushes underneath your windows are too inviting and they would make for a good hideout, replace them with thorny bushes.
  • Trim all the shrubs and trees placed beneath your windows.
  • Add gravel to your walkway or driveway to make sure anyone lurking around your home will make a lot of noise.
  • If your windows can be pried open with ease, add security locks or bars on them and consider installing sensors.
  • If you can easily notice your expensive desktop computer, smart TV, and other expensive items through a ground-level window, find other locations for these items.
  • Contact a professional locksmith service or get in touch with the local police and have them determine the exact security risk on your home. They should provide you with expert advice on ways to protect your home from break-ins while offering hands-on solutions.

2. Upgrade Security on All Your Doors and Windows

Install a Deadbolt Lock on the Front Door

If you do not already have single or double-cylinder deadbolt locks on your front door, you might want to consider upgrading your security. The Burglary Prevention Council speaks of close to 35% of intruders simply walking into their victims' homes using the front door. In other words, protecting your home from thieves should start with incorporating a deadbolt into the door's design. Choose for the right model for you. Single-cylinder deadbolt locks feature just one key slot on the side of the door facing the exterior, with the other side featuring a turning mechanism or a knob. Double-key deadbolts require the use of two keys on both sides of the door, one to enter and one to exit. This makes this lock model more secure.

Strengthen Security on Sliding Patio Doors

Use sturdy rods or dowels on the back tracks of sliding doors to strengthen security on them and stop them from being easily popped off the frame by burglars. Consider using steel bars that can be slid into the back groove that can stop thieves from sliding the door back to open it.

Add More Layers of Security to the Windows protect your home against break-ins

Consider fitting a nail or a pin inside the window frames to stop burglars from trying to pop off the screens to reach the windows with more ease. Drill a hole at the correct height above the sash of a window frame made of wood, right where the bottom and the top of the windows intersect. Next, insert a thick metal nail or pin into the hole. Add window stoppers to the frame of the window where the AC unit is installed.

Install Floor Locks

If the front door has sidelights, consider installing a floor lock to stop potential burglars from reaching in through the narrow, vertical window on one or both sides of your front door or patio door. If possible, replace your old doors with thick wooden doors that are not easy to kick in and which can effectively thwart break-ins.

3. Lock Up and Hide Your Spare Keys in Safe Locations

Having the right, top-quality locks on our doors and windows that can add extra layers of protection and security to your property is only half the work. Unless you also properly make use of these locks and keep your doors and windows locked at all times before leaving the premises, whether for a short errand or for a longer time, your locks will be rendered useless. Safely guard your keys and spare keys and make sure your home is not just as vulnerable as it was before you decided to implement these ways to protect your home from break-ins because of someone getting easy access to your keys.

Only choose the best “where to hide a home key” solutions and try to avoid the regular doormat and flower pot options. These, together with fake-looking garden rocks that can be spotted from a mile away represent some of the most obvious and worst locations to hide a key, especially when they are placed right next to the front door. Whenever possible, ask a trusted neighbor to safeguard your spare keys for you. You might even consider using magnetic combination lockboxes placed in well-secluded locations outside the house or apartment.

4. Don't Advertise an Empty Home

If you plan on leaving the city for an extended period of time, do not make it too obvious for potential neighborhood burglars looking for their next victim. Avoid revealing your plans and exact whereabouts in real-time on your social media messages. Also, do not change your outgoing voicemail message to let everyone know you are on vacation. Find clever ways to make your house or apartment look occupied from the exterior. For this, you may want to install timers on your lights. Use them to automatically turn your lamp on in different rooms around the house at different hours during the night. If you have any outdoor lights, program them to randomly turn on in the evening. Ask someone to pick up your piling mail and daily newspaper and don't forget about the snow that needs shoveling in the walkway or driveway or the lawn that needs mowing in the summer, if you plan on being away for a few weeks.

These are just a few of our recommendations on how to protect your house from break-ins. Don't wait until your home is broken into before you start strengthening your security!