Home burglaries resulted in $ 4.6 billion in lost property in 2010, and the average dollar loss per burglary was $ 2,119, according to the FBI. While the cost of lost property is significant, the emotional cost it entails when the security of your home is compromised is even greater.
1. Install exterior lighting. Make sure the exterior of your home has enough light, and consider installing lights in shaded areas. Better yet, install motion detector lights. Parts and labor cost around $ 1000 for a full installation, and they use less energy than luminaires which are always on. In addition, motion detector lights are more likely to scare off a potential burglar when clicked.
2. Contact the police. Obviously you should call 911 if someone breaks into your home, but did you know that you can have a police officer inspect your home for any gaps in home security? Although you do not have to call the emergency number to make this request, the direct line to your local district should do the trick. It’s a great way to get advice on how to improve your home protection strategy.
3. Get involved in your community. Create or join a neighborhood watch group to reduce the risk of home burglaries and crime in your neighborhood. Understand that creating a group takes time, so it’s important to prepare for engagement. Also let your local police department know that you are setting up a watch group and ask them for help with advice on safety and participation. Finally, make sure everyone in the group understands that they should never approach a suspicious person themselves, but should call the local police to deal with the situation.
4. Become a dog owner. While it shouldn’t be your only line of defense, adopting or buying a dog can help prevent home burglaries, as some burglars may be deterred from breaking and entering if they hear barking.
5. Consider a home alarm. Home alarm systems are great, but they’re also expensive. Weigh the pros and cons and consider the crime statistics in your neighborhood before requesting a facility. If you want one for added protection and peace of mind, consider getting one unattended. The sound of a triggered alarm is usually all you need to keep a burglar at bay.
6. Install a fence. Installing a fence is another way to protect your home, and the taller the fence the better. If you are on hand, you can actually install a 6ft protective fence for a reasonable price. You can find them for under $ 500.
7. Maintain the landscaping. Keep all your bushes and shrubs trimmed, cut your grass regularly and maintain the rest of your landscaping. There are two reasons for this: first, you eliminate areas where a burglar might be on the prowl, and second, a maintained exterior is a psychological deterrent for a potential thief. He knows you spend time taking care of your home, so he’s more likely to take steps to protect it.
8. Make your house occupied. Homes are prone to break-ins when thieves have reason to believe the owners are on vacation. Cut down on the obvious signs of an empty house by having a friend or family member pick up your mail and newspapers each day, and go inside to open and close some curtains and drapes. If you are going on a road trip, have a neighbor park their car in the driveway and always be sure to leave a few lights on. If your home seems tidy and bustling with activity, burglars are less likely to make it a target.