Unfortunately, the burglar does not need to look around very long to discover "Welcome Burglar" signs unwittingly left around many homes. It is even more unfortunate when you realize that all it takes to make your home less inviting to a burglar is a little common sense and several easy, effective and inexpensive crime prevention measures.
Survey Your Home
Look at your home through a burglar's eyes. Does it look like an easy target? Are there obvious security weaknesses?
Common sense is all that is needed to identify most security weaknesses around your home. Perform a home security check on your home, download a copy of the Home Security Checklist here.
Install Better Locks
Many homes are equipped with spring-latch door locks. Most spring-latch locks can be pried open easily by even the most inept burglar. Crime prevention experts recommend deadbolt locks, to provide the security needed for exterior doors. The bolt on the lock should extend at least one inch into the doorframe to provide adequate security. Other good security locks, such as the pry-resistant rim lock, are available.
Additionally, when you move into a new home, or if you lose your house keys, contact a locksmith to re-key or change-out your locks. The change can be done quickly and fairly inexpensively. It also makes the old or lost keys useless. But most importantly, don't forget to lock up. Even the best locks provide no protection if left unlocked. Securely lock your home even if you plan to be away for only a few minutes.
Secure Doors and Windows
Wooden exterior doors have either solid or hollow core construction. Solid core doors provide the greatest security. They are able to withstand attacks by burglars, and are best suited for installation of good locks.
If an exterior door contains a glass panel or is within (48) inches of a window, you should install a double-cylinder deadbolt lock which requires a key to unlock it from either side of the door. This lock will prevent a burglar from reaching inside to unlock the door after breaking the glass.
Doors which swing open to the outside have exposed hinges in easy reach of burglars. These doors can be secured by the "hinge pinning" technique:
Open garage doors attract burglars. Make a habit of keeping garage doors closed and locked. An open garage door, with no car in sight, is a clear invitation to a burglar. This is especially true if the garage is used to store such items as bicycles, power mowers, garden tools, and other easily stolen property.
Sliding glass doors are particularly vulnerable to attacks by burglars. The "pinning" technique mentioned above will prevent the lock from being forced or the door from being lifted from the track. Key operated pins or grips are a preferred method of securing sliding glass doors.
With door closed, drill hole (angle downward) through top and bottom corners of inner frame, partially into outer frame insert pin or nail.
Windows are another common entry point for burglars. Double-hung windows can be easily and inexpensively secured by using the "pinning" technique.
Good security for windows is provided by key-operated window locks, especially when used as auxiliaries to conventional window locks.
Remember, an open or unlocked window or door invites burglars.
Give Your home an Occupied Look
Most burglars are looking for unoccupied homes. If your home appears occupied, the burglar will usually look for other, more inviting sites.
Use Common Sense
Common sense will help keep the burglar away. Be aware of the common methods which burglars use to gain entry, and make sure your entire family understands what to do in certain situations.
Warn family members to be cautious about giving out information over the telephone. Burglars sometimes call ahead to learn if anyone is home, who is home, or when residents are expected to return.
Organize a Neighborhood Watch Group
Many communities have formed Neighborhood Watch groups to protect themselves from burglars. Through a Neighborhood Watch organization, neighbors agree to keep an eye on each other's property and to report suspicious activities to the Lakeland Police Department. Learn more about Neighborhood Watch.
Call the Community Services Unit today to schedule a FREE home security survey. One of our highly trained members will come to your residence and conduct an on-site survey to help you be aware of any security risks your home might have.
CALL US TODAY at 863.834.6912