Oftentimes, the best way to stop a thief is to think like one. To keep your home safe and secure, take a few minutes to “case the joint” like a thief would. And if you see any way a thief or robber could threaten your family or possessions, you can bet a crook will see it, too.
Here are some things to consider:
Don’t Give Thieves a Place to Hide
Thieves are publicity-shy. They prefer to work out of view, so don’t give them a place to hide. Keep shrubs next to the house trimmed low. Look for places a thief could work out of sight and eliminate them if you can. Garages are particularly vulnerable, so keep main doors down and side doors secure with good-quality locks.
Shut the Front Door
Hard as it may be to believe, the place most thieves enter is right through the front door. According to the Washington Post, 34% of burglars come in that way with 23% coming through first-floor windows and 22% in a back door. Most builder-grade locks won’t stop an amateur, let alone a pro. Replace flimsy entrance hardware with reinforced deadbolts and put sash locks on windows and sliding doors. And use them! You’d be surprised at how many thieves come in through unlocked doors and windows.
Light Things Up
Protect against nighttime burglaries by lighting vulnerable spots. A porch light that’s on all night is welcoming to visitors but not to thieves. With low-wattage bulbs like compact fluorescents and LEDs, the cost of keeping a few lights on at night is minimal compared to the security they add. Motion-activated lights are inexpensive and save the need to remember to turn them on.
Make Break-ins Alarming
Even the suggestion of a security system is enough to deter most thieves. Alarm signs, window stickers and security cameras tell burglars to skip your house in favor of one that’s not protected. While a functional system is most effective, you can even get fake stickers and dummy cameras to fool crooks.
Valuables that are in the open or easy to see through windows and doors are welcome signs to thieves. Don’t leave things outdoors and keep curtains and blinds closed. Sheer curtains let in light but mask your contents. Turning blind slats upward let thieves see your ceilings instead of your stuff. Keep valuables in secure and hard-to-find places. The average thief is in a home for 8-12 minutes. The first places they look are dresser drawers, closets, and freezers. If you don’t want to lock valuables in a safe, here are some clever ways to hide things in plain sight.
Don’t Think Daylight is a Deterrent
Most home burglaries occur between 10 am and 3 pm. That’s when people are away at work or on errands. Keep your home safe during the day with a security system (fake ones are easier to spot in daylight) and signs warning of dogs inside. One of our favorites says “My Guard Dog is Faster Than You Are. Feeling Lucky?” Of course actually having a dog is the best bet, but signs alone can deter break-ins, just like alarm signs do.
While nothing is likely to stop a determined pro from breaking into you house, the good news is that most home burglaries are committed by teenage boys looking for things that are easy to sell on the black market. The better your security measures, the less tempting your home will be as a target. You’ll probably save money on your insurance, too.
A good place to start is with good-quality locks. The pros at Alexius Security, The Denver Locksmiths, can help you choose and install the ones that are right for you.
Our services go beyond simply working on locks, too. We can advise you about the best systems for your safety and convenience and recommend security measures for all of your property. Just give us a call at 303.617.3717 or use our online contact form for prompt, professional attention to your security needs.