15 Tips To Protect Your Family Against Burglary

closing the balcony door

The following is written by guest blogger, Nathan Hughes.

Have you ever had your home broken into? A break-in feels horrible and can have a big impact on your family’s sense of safety and well-being.

Unfortunately, burglary is also one of the most common crimes. However, it is also one of the easiest crimes to prevent. Here are my top tips for keeping your home and family safe and secure from intruders.

#1 Get Visibly Strong Locks
It is important to have a visibly strong lock on the entrances to your home. Strong locks not only physically stop a burglar gaining entrance from your home but also can act as a deterrent. Deadbolts are one of the strongest residential locks available. Don’t go for the $5 ‘cheapy’ at your local hardware store. A quality double cylinder deadlock will start at around $30 and be able to resist against a determined thief.

#2 Install Solid Wood Or Metal Doors
Solid wood or metal doors make it very difficult for an intruder to kick down your doors. All main entrance doors should be made of solid construction. Thieves can break windows and open the door from the inside, so make sure you go windowless

#3 Lock Your Doors & Windows
This may seem like obvious advice but many people do forget. Make sure you lock all of your doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed. Don’t forget to lock everything on the second floor, as well.

#4 Get A Peep Hole Installed
A peephole can help you or the kids determine who is at the door without opening it up. I recommend having a rule with the kids: if you don’t know the person and mom and dad aren’t at the door with you, then don’t open the door.

#5 Install An Alarm
An alarm is an excellent deterrent against burglary. The last thing a thief wants is attention bought to their illegal activities. Have a routine with the kids every time you leave the house: “Doors locked? Windows locked? Alarm On? Ok, let’s go!”

#6 Get Motion Activated Lights
Do you want someone sneaking around your yard? Motion sensors can pick up any movement and shine a light on a specific location. Install motion sensor lights around your home, making sure to cover entrances to your property and your house. If you are on a budget, at least have lights shine on the front and back door of your home. The last thing thieves want is to be seen.

#7 Post Up Security Stickers
Letting would-be burglars know that your home has a security system can be a good deterrent. Place security signs in obvious places such as main entrances and on your letter box. Keep it generic. Details such as the security system make, model and manufacturer can be used by burglars to bypass your security system.

#8 Don’t Advertise That You Are Away
Reconsidered letting people know you are away on your answering machine or social media page. This lets potential criminals know you are not home and that your house is an easy target.

#9 Cut Back Shrubs & Hiding Places
Do you have large plants or trees around your home? Shrubs can create the perfect hiding place for thieves. Make sure you remove any hiding places near entrances of your home such as windows or doors. If you can’t remove them completely, make sure that you keep them regularly trimmed.

#10 Know Your Neighbors
Your neighbors can keep an eye out for any strange activity around you home and notify the local authorities. If you are on friendly terms with your neighbor, you can have them park their car in your driveway and take your garbage out when you are on holidays. This gives the illusion that someone is home.

#11 Don’t Show Off Valuables
Bought a new tv or something else of value? Make sure you conceal the box so it is not easily visible. Empty boxes can notify potential burglars of what belongings you may have.

Also, close all curtains at night or if you go on holidays. If a thief can’t see what you have, they may not risk entering your home.

#12 Don’t Leave A Hidden Spare Key Outside
One of the first thing burglars do is check nearby flower pots, welcome mats or other hiding places for a spare key. If they find it, then it is easy access to your home. Don’t leave a key hidden in your yard. If you want to keep a spare key somewhere, give it to your neighbor for safe keeping.

#13 Get A Fireproof Safe
This is for an extra level of security. Put all small valuables and documents like jewelry, cash and your children’s birth certificates in the safe to keep them secure. Make sure the safe is bolted down to the floor so an intruder can’t take it away and open it elsewhere.

#14 Keep A List Of Valuables
This is handy in the worst case scenario. If you do happen to have a break-in, a detailed list of valuables can help with the police investigation and insurance claims. Make a list of valuable family possessions such as antiques and jewelry. Store all this information in your safe for secure keeping.

#15 Get Your Home Security Assessed By A Locksmith
Depending on which state you live in, most local police departments can offer a free security check of your home. If they don’t, a local locksmith will also offer these services. Police and locksmiths will be familiar with any local break-ins and offer you professional advice to securing your home from intruders.

Many of these tips you can start doing today. For the bigger changes, set aside one task per week. 1 hours worth of work or a simple phone call could save you thousands of dollars and heartache.

PROFILE-PIC-Nathan-Locksmith-SydneyAbout Nathan:
Nathan Hughes is a founder of Locksmiths In Sydney. When he is not letting you back into your house at 4 am in the morning, he is dressed up as Iron Man running around at home with his family. For more information on securing your home, check out his simple free home security essentials guide and checklist.

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