Even homes in the safest neighborhoods can get burgled when owners don't follow the right precautions. Homeowners can lower their risk of break-ins by following these tips. The more active you become in your home's protection, the less likely it is that a burglar will target you.
Tip #1: Get an Alarm System
Burglars like to choose easy targets. Most of them don't want to encounter anyone while stealing property. They especially don't want to encounter any security guards or police officers.
Getting an alarm system makes your home look like trouble. According to research that polled convicted burglars, over half of them said they would skip homes that have alarm systems. Instead of trying to evade the alarms, they would rather find easier targets.
Of course, not every thief runs away when he sees an alarm system. Some might try to break-in no matter what. Thanks to your alarm system, you don't have to worry about this rare breed of thief. Once he trips the alarm, the cops are on the way to take care of the problem. Getting a video camera can further deter a burglar and provide you with useful evidence.
Tip #2: Start a Neighborhood Watch
Your neighbors are some of the best anti-theft options you have. As long as you can form trusting bonds with them, you know that you can count on each other to keep an eye on the whole neighborhood.
If your neighborhood doesn't have a watch, then you could organize one. Many police departments are happy to work with homeowners who want to increase safety in their communities.
Even if you don't have time to participate in a community-wide neighborhood watch, you can still talk to your neighbors to let them know when you'll be out of town. Your home is most vulnerable when you leave it for days at a time. Make friends with your nearby neighbors so they can watch your home while you're away.
Tip #3: Make Your Home Look Occupied
Only a small minority of burglars are willing to break-in to an occupied house. There's simply too much risk of getting hurt or arrested.
If you make it look like someone is always home, then thieves are less likely to target your property.
You can make your home look occupied by:
- putting lights on auto-timers
- leaving a car in the garage when you're out of town
- keeping the lawn in good condition
- stopping mail and newspaper service when you leave town for several days
The more "lived in" you can make your house look, the less likely it is that a burglar will try to break-in.