Are you an Easy Target?
What are the odds that your home will be burglarized this year?
In the U.S. a home burglary occurs every 13 seconds. What things can make your home an attractive target for burglars? What can you do to protect yourself? Here are five easy tips to “think like a burglar” and keep your home safe.
Here are the Statistical Facts as compiled the US Department of Justice
- Annually Around 2,000,000 home burglaries are reported each year in the United States.
- In about 28% of these burglaries, a household member was present during the burglary.
- Around60% of burglars used forcible entry to gain access to a home. More than 30% of burglars entered residences through an unlocked door, window and other opening without force.
- Nearly 66% of all burglaries are residential (home) break-ins.
- Renters are just as likely to be the victims of property crime as homeowners.
- The highest percentage of burglaries occur during the summer months.
- Homes without security systems are up to 300% more likely to be broken into.
Don’t Stand Out -Keep a low profile.
Is your flat-screen TV visible through a window from the street? Do you have an expensive car parked in your driveway? To a burglar, those are sure signs that your home might offer a lucrative haul. Keep expensive items hidden, and don’t advertise large purchases by leaving boxes at the curb especially after Christmas. Two things you can do to make your house less expensive is have an Alarm System and a sign or a Beware of Dog Sign. Burglars hate Dogs.
Maintain visibility – Don’t give them a place t hide
Tall shrubs and privacy fences provide burglars with cover so your neighbors won’t see them breaking in. Keep windows and doors visible to deter burglars. Install motion-activated floodlights around your home to draw attention if someone approaches after dark. You can also invest in motion alarms
such as drive away alarms that alert you when someone enters your premises.
Lock upstairs windows, and don’t keep ladders outside.
People often forget to lock upstairs windows—and burglars know it. Make sure all your windows are locked when you’re not home, and keep your ladders in a locked garage or shed so a burglar can’t use them to access upstairs windows.
Make it look like someone home.
Unoccupied houses are prime targets, after all burglars don’t want to be seen. Use timers on lights, televisions and radios to create the appearance of activity. Hire landscapers if you’ll be out of town for an extended period so your home looks well cared for. If a burglar thinks someone is home, they’re more likely to skip your house. Tell a trusted neighbors and the police when you are going to be away for an extended period. Most convicted burglars (90%) said they want to avoid homes with alarm systems and said if they did encounter an alarm, they would abandon the attack on the home
Secure doors and windows.
Burglars look for weak doors with old hardware that are easy to kick in. If your doors aren’t secure, replace the knobs, locks and hardware. I would suggest installing the strike master II door brace or a similar device on your doors that help resist kick-ins, and consider adding dead bolt. If you have a doggie door, secure it with a lock or just seal it up. Typically, burglars spend less than 60 seconds breaking into a home. The more difficult it is to gain access, the more likely a burglar is to reconsider the attack.
Who commits these burglaries and why?
- Perpetrators are usually male, under 25 years of age.
- They are looking for items that are small and expensive and easily converted to cash.
- Favorite items include: cash, jewelry, laptops, guns, digital cameras, small electronics (Ipods, GPS, PDA’s MP-3’s and CD’s)
- Money is usually used to support a drug habit.
When do most home break-in occur?
- They usually occur in the daytime when occupants are at school or work. From (11 AM – 3PM)
- July and August most the frequent months for break-ins.
- February is the least frequent for home breaks.
What can you do to prevent becoming a victim?
- Don’t make your house appealing.
- Home security statistics tell us that burglars will usually bypass a house if it requires too much effort or more skills or tools than they possess.
- Most breaks are through front or back doors.
- Unlocked outer doors to common hallways give thieves a chance to break in through inner doors while remaining out of sight of neighbors and police. Keep outside doors locked
Doors and Locks
- Use a solid core or metal door at entrance points.
- Use a high quality heavy-duty dead bolt with a one inch throw bolt.
- Use a quality knob-in-lock set with dead latch mechanism.
It’s Easy to get into your home
- Use a heavy-duty strike plate (like Strike Master II or Similar) with 3 inch screws into the frame.
- Use a wide angle fish-eye peephole.
- When you move into a new house or apartment, change or re-key the door locks.
Sliding Glass Doors
- This type of door is usually secured by latches only.
- They are vulnerable to attack.
- Security can be increased by inserting a wooden dowel or stick into the door track to prevent movement.
- There are also metal track blockers / locks available.
Windows (the most frequent point of entry during warm weather months)
- Windows are left unlocked at a much higher rate than doors.
- An open window that is visible from the street may be the sole reason that a house is targeted. An open window with only a locked window screen is particularly inviting to thieves. Access is quick, easy and silent.
- Windows have latches, not locks; they should have secondary locking
- Wooden sticks/dowels work well with horizontal sliding windows.
- For vertical windows, through the frame pins work well.
- For ventilation, leave no more than a 4 – 6 inch window opening.
- Make sure that opening is not large enough to allow someone to reach through to unlock the door or remove window lock.
Be A Good Neighbor
- Get to know your neighbors.
- Watch each other’s home.
- While on vacation, pick up mail, newspapers, packages and flyers; put out their trash on trash day (and return empty barrels).
- Offer to park your car in their driveway and listen for a siren from their home security system.
- Water flowers, grass and plants.
- Communicate with each other.
Home Security Lighting
- Interior lighting is necessary to show signs of activity inside.
- Use timers (lights, radios and televisions). Make the home appears occupied.
- Exterior lighting is very important.
- Lights in front of the home should be on a timer.
- Many of the modern home security systems will allow your to program lights based on timers or activity.
Home Alarm Systems
- Burglars will usually bypass a home that they believe has a sophisticated burglar alarm.
- Having a great alarm system increase the potential of burglar being caught.
- Home security statistics tell us that an audible horn or siren must be part of the system.
- Alarm systems should reset within three minutes so as not to disturb the neighborhood.
- Leave a key to your house and alarm system with a trusted neighbor who is usually there when you are not home.
- Alarm systems can also monitor fire sensors and panic buttons.
- Upgrade your Alarm System every 3-4 years.
- Engrave your driver’s license number (and state) or last 4 of you SSN on televisions, stereos, computers and small electronic appliances.
- Photograph your valuables, especially jewelry and electronics.
- Make a list of make, model, serial numbers and value of important items and take pictures that you store online.
- Give a copy of this list to a relative or close friend.
PepperEyes.com is dedicated to providing you with the best and most affordable self-defense products, and safety products on the market to meet the security needs of you, your family members or your business, by assisting anyone who is unwilling to become a victim of crime. If you want to take personal responsibility for protection, home security, business security, purchase our high quality discount self-defense products and arm yourself with the knowledge about self-defense and security products and information of the best way to stay secure in an ever-increasing violent world. In today’s society, being equipped mentally and physically is no longer an option. PepperEyes.com is a division of Onyx Knight Enterprises