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How to Secure Your Home From Burglary

Garages with windowsDoes your garage have windows? Consider installing blinds to keep them guessing whether you are home or away.

The following are some simple tips to secure your home from burglary and help prevent home burglaries while you are away from your home.

1. Make your home appear as if it's occupied by leaving a few interior lights on. You may also want to turn on your television with sound volume turned up so that it can be heard throughout the house. It's advisable that some rooms have shades completely closed so that it's difficult for someone on the outside to determine if anyone is home.

2. Lock all doors, shut / lock all windows and set your alarm before you leave. Your alarm should include shock (for windows) and motion sensors. Also ask your alarm company if they have signs or stickers you can place around the perimeter of your house indicating your house is secured by an alarm. They will usually provide this for free.

3. Try not to allow newspapers, mail, or advertising to accumulate outside your home. This can be a clear indication that your home is not occupied. If possible, have a friend or trusted neighbor collect your mail and newspapers for you on some schedule if you are away. You may want to put a "No Solicitors" sign on your door. This may deter some solicitors from placing advertising on your door while you are away.

4. You might consider having a neighbor park in your driveway if you expect to be gone for an extended period of time. Explain to your neighbor if you are expecting any service calls during your absence such as lawn maintenance, maid service, or pest control. This way your neighbor will have a better idea who is authorized around your home and who isn't.

An overflowing mailbox - an indication you are away from your home.Allowing mail to accumulate is a bad idea. This is one of the things thieves look for as an indication that you are away from your home.

5. If your garage has windows it's recommended that you install shades to completely block visibility from the outside. This will prevent someone from seeing if your car is inside; a prime indicator that you are away.

6. Catalogue all of your valuables. This includes all appliances, electronics, jewelry, antiques, tools, etc. and write down serial numbers for everything applicable. Share this information with your insurance company. It's also recommended you photograph everything. You can do this by going room-to-room taking pictures. It's sometimes easier to recall things you owned after a burglary happens by reviewing photos. All of this will come in handy when filing an insurance claim.

7. Always consider using a safe deposit box at your bank to store gold, jewelry, valuable certificates, important documents, etc. Not only will this save you in the event of a burglary, but also keeps your valuables safe from fire.

8. Some people will let their guard down thinking that a burglary is less likely to happen during the day. Contrary to what many people think, home burglaries are more likely to happen during the day than at night. This is because people tend to be away from their homes during working hours. Stats show that most homes are burglarized between 10 AM - 3 PM. Practice the same level of security during the day as you would at night.

9. Turn on outside lights and preferably motion sensitive lights at night for portions of your home's perimeter near windows. If feasible, have someone turn off your lights during the daytime and turn them back on at night. Leaving your lights on for an extended period of time during daytime hours may be an indication that your home is not occupied.