10 Simple Ways to Protect Your Home from Burglars

Hundreds of thousands of homes are burglarized in the U.S. every year. In 2019, an estimated 1,117,696 homes were robbed. That’s the equivalent of one home being broken into every 30 seconds.

Thankfully, there are many ways to discourage and detect threats to your home. Use the tips in this blog to protect your home from any break-ins and thefts.

10 easy ways to protect your home from intruders

1. Install a security system

A home security system is the best, most reliable way to protect your home. You can use a variety of sensors to catch burglars when they open a window or door. If they manage to get inside, a motion detector can alert you to their presence. No matter how they try to get in, your alarm will make sure you know about the intrusion.

Services like professional monitoring ensure that your security provider is watching for any alerts. They can react immediately, letting you know about the alarm and sending emergency responders to your home.

Equipping your home with smart security cameras is another great way to strengthen your security system. These devices will alert you to lurkers or intruders. You can use your live camera feed to see what is happening and react quickly.

2. Don’t announce trips

Many people like to announce exciting occasions such as trips on their social networks. When you do, however, you are telling people that your home will be empty and unmonitored for a specific period of time. 

Burglars can use this information to target your home when they know you’ll be gone. Without a security system or housesitter to detect the theft, you won’t know you’ve been burglarized until you return home.

3. Establish a nightly lock-up routine

Forgetting to lock the door is a simple mistake, but it creates an easy entry point for thieves.

Get in the habit of checking your doors and windows every night before bed, as well as anytime you leave the house. Make sure each entry is closed and locked securely. Even if you’ve never opened certain windows, include them in your routine. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

You should also include your vehicles in this process, especially if you have a garage door remote inside. Hit the lock button on your key fob just to make sure thieves won’t have access to your vehicles and possessions.

4. Consider a smart lock

Hiding a key near the front door is a common but dangerous practice. Burglars know to look for these hiding places, using these keys to get inside.

Instead, use a smart door lock to prevent break-ins. You can use your phone or a numerical code to unlock the door, even if you get locked out. 

Better yet, you can create codes for additional users. Rather than giving out keys to family and friends, give them their own codes. Dog walkers, cleaners, and maintenance workers can also get their own codes to simplify your schedule without leaving your home vulnerable.

5. Address security vulnerabilities

Could a burglar use a ground-floor window to enter your home? Do you have a blind spot in your yard?

Security experts are trained to find the vulnerabilities that burglars can use to break into your home. You can hire an expert for a security consultation, as well as get one through some security providers. 

After the review, they will show you the best ways to resolve these weaknesses and protect your home.

6. Illuminate your yard

Burglars prefer homes with less lighting. The easier it is to hide, the better.

Install floodlights and porch lights to illuminate your home and property. If you’re worried about light shining through the windows while you’re trying to sleep, consider motion-activated lighting. 

Lights are especially important if you don’t have street lights near your home. Just don’t forget to turn your lights on at night or set them on a timer to keep your home illuminated.

7. Stay friendly with neighbors

You can’t be home all the time, but you can rely on the people around you when you’re out. Get to know your neighbors and ask them to keep an eye on your home. They can alert you to lurkers or strange activity around your home, events you might otherwise miss.

For greater neighborhood security, create a network of neighbors who watch for any potential threats. The more people there are watching, the more secure your home will be. 

8. Keep your garage door secured

You may keep the front door locked out of habit, but do you do the same for the door connecting your garage and home?

Prevent easy entries by locking this door or keeping your garage door closed when you’re not outside. You can also use a door sensor to let you know when this door is opened.

9. Hide valuables and calendars from view

Burglars “window shop” while picking homes to rob. They look inside your windows to see what kind of TVs, electronics, and other valuables they can grab.

Discourage thieves by placing curtains or blinds on your windows—and keeping them closed. Plant shrubs or bushes along the outside of windows to keep burglars from getting close enough to take a peek inside.

If you can, position your valuables out of sight as well. Don’t place any expensive items where they are easy to see from the yard or sidewalk.

Calendars should also be kept away from windows. Otherwise, a thief might be able to see when you have a vacation or appointment scheduled and target your home then.

10. Get a safe

Unsurprisingly, a safe is the most secure place for your valuables. Even if a burglar gets inside your home, they won’t be able to steal these items. Use your safe to store documents like passports and life insurance policies, as well as items such as jewelry, money, and more. Be sure to place the safe in a bedroom or office, not in the garage where it’s more exposed.

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