Many burglars are not master criminals – they’re opportunists looking for an easy target. While any home could be burgled, some homes are more appealing than others, simply because their owners are a little lax when it comes to security.
1. Secure Windows and Doors
Doors and windows are going to be a burglar’s first port of call when he arrives at your home, so always make sure you leave yours closed and locked, even if you’re only going out for a short time.
Make sure your main doors are strong and secured to a high standard with all locks a minimum of British Standard 3621. All windows, especially those on the ground floor, should be fitted with window locks.
Never leave keys or other valuables in sight of your doors or windows – thieves will use a long stick to catch them and let themselves in.
2. Lighten Up
Burglars don’t like to be in the spotlight, so fitting good external lights to your property is an excellent deterrent. Fit low-energy lighting that’s activated by sensors around your property’s exterior – they’re cost effective and will alert those at home as well as your neighbours and any passers-by, to the presence of an intruder.
If you’re going to be away for a few days or more, fit timer lights around your property so it looks as though somebody’s at home.
3. Invest in an Alarm
Fitting a burglar alarm is an excellent deterrent that should be fitted to every home. They reinforce other aspects of home security and act as a deterrent to criminals.
Buy the best alarm you can afford – experienced burglars can bypass cheap systems and identify dummy alarms with ease.
For maximum security, consider investing in a complete home security system, which uses CCTV and access control. Or invest in a monitored alarm that will alert the police or your neighbours to the presence of an intruder.
4. Be Social Media Savvy
Facebook and Twitter are great ways of showing off new gifts received for your birthday or Christmas, or bragging that you’re about to jet off on holiday, but be careful of what you post – social media is a burglar’s best friend when looking for potential homes to burgle.
Uploading pictures of your expensive new goodies is a come-and-get-me sign to a burglar, and a status update that your home is going to be unoccupied for two weeks is a written invitation to pay your home a little visit.
Be selective about what you post and share.
5. Join a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme
If you haven’t already, join your local neighbourhood watch scheme. There’s safety in numbers and you will feel a greater peace of mind in knowing that your neighbours are all looking out for each other. If there isn’t a scheme in your neighbourhood, why not set one up.
Don’t give the opportunist burglar a chance when it comes to the security of your home. If you follow these simple but effective tips, your property will be as safe as houses.