Securing your home against burglary does not necessarily require an enormous investment in resources. Follow our 6 tips and better secure what is most dear in your life.
Each year, countless Canadians find themselves the unfortunate victims of burglary and home invasions that result in damage and loss of property or even worse. As grim as this truth might appear, the reality is that many burglaries and home invasions can be prevented through the application of a number of simple precautions.
While burglars might lack morality, they do not necessarily lack common sense. They seek money and valuables and the path of least resistance to obtain them. Given the option of breaking into a home with solid locks and a well-lit exterior or a poorly secured home with little exterior lighting, burglars will choose the latter every time.
The following are 6 simple tips that will go a long way to help you secure your home, property and, more importantly, your family.
1. Secure Your Home’s Points Of Entry
The most obvious way to make life difficult for any potential burglars is to fortify all possible points of entry into your home. Generally speaking, a home’s garage door and backdoors are a burglars preferred points of entry as they can be most easily worked without any neighbors taking notice.
Make sure that all of the doors of your home are secure, in particular, your garage door and any backdoors. It is highly recommended that all outside doors, including the door separating your garage and home, are secured with deadbolts and don’t forget to verify that all of the lock strike plates are robust. We also recommend that all doors located near windows are secured with double cylinder locks. Double cylinder locks can be locked from the inside which will prevent any potential burglars from breaking the door’s adjacent window and reaching inside and turning the doorknob.
In order to best insure that your home is properly secured, have a professional locksmith perform a walk through to check all entry points for weaknesses.
2. Secure Windows And Glass Doors
Many people will go to great lengths to secure their doors with the latest in locking technologies and yet will neglect their windows and glass patio doors. Windows will often come with little plastic thumb locks which are simply not effective and can be easily bypassed. You should consider a minor investment in decent window locks.
Sliding glass doors require two measures of security; the first being a lock and the second a length of pole to put in the door’s tracks to prevent the door from sliding open. Since the length of pole put in a sliding door’s tracks can be easily lifted, we also recommend the installation of a small locking device to secure the length of pole in place.
3. Have A Home Security System Installed
It is a simple fact that homes secured with an alarm system are burgled with significantly less frequency. We not only recommend that you have an alarm system installed but we recommend that you keep it active at all times, even when you are home; the only thing worse than coming home to find that your house has been burglarized is to come downstairs only to find that your home is in the process of being burglarized.
Home security systems will not only trigger an alarm and inform the authorities that a burglary is underway but having an alarm, in and of itself, is often enough of a deterrent for most burglars. For this reason, we recommend that you put decals indicating your alarm system on all of your first floor windows in both the front and back of your home.
4. Install Exterior Lighting
Light is the burglar’s kryptonite. It is for this reason that burglars will frequently attempt entry into a home via the rear doors and windows. Installing exterior lighting that is activated during the night via light sensor or motion detector will illuminate your home and act as a deterrent to any would be burglars.
5. Take Extra Precautions When Away From Home For Extended Periods
Oftentimes, burglars will case a neighborhood in order to determine which homes are occupied and which homes might be easiest to burglarize. When leaving your home for extended periods whether it be vacation or business, it is important to give the impression that you are, in fact, at home.
The first thing that you should prior to going away is to halt all deliveries to your home; including, mail, newspapers, etc. There is nothing that says “no one is home” like 2 weeks’ worth of newspapers strewn across your driveway.
Make sure that before you leave, you set your lights on timers and have them go on and off periodically throughout the day and night. This will help create the illusion that someone is present in the home and hopefully convince any burglars to move on.
6. Change Your Locks In New Home
Whenever one moves into a new residence, their first priority should be to change the locks. We recommend that you schedule a locksmith to come and meet you at your new home on the very first day. The former residents might seem nice; however, you can never know for sure and only God knows to whom they gave copies of the keys. In the event that you are moving into a rental, have the landlord change the locks.
In addition to changing out the locks, you should also have a locksmith perform a top-to-bottom inspection of the entire home. A professional locksmith will have the experience and knowledge to best assist you in hammering out any chinks in your new home’s armor.
Outside of living in a fortress surrounded by a crocodile infested moat and patrolled by commandos, it is nearly impossible to enjoy 100% protection from burglary. That having been said, following the above 6 tips will give any would be burglar more than an incentive to move on to an easier mark.