Last year, on average, a home burglary netted over $2,000 dollars. Aside from losing money, a home burglary is also likely cost homeowners the peace of mind they need to feel safe and secure in their home.
Even though simply thinking about having your home burglarized can be unsettling, it's important to consider how to prevent a burglary from occurring in the first place or what to do in the event that a burglar enters your home.
Roughly 2 million burglaries occur annually. Most of the time, a burglar "cases"—scouts out the home to look for security weakness before they decide to actually commit the burglary—which makes burglary deterrence one of the best ways to protect your property and family.
Lock Everything Down - installing locks on gates, windows, garage doors, and other access points will signal to potential burglars that your property is secure. With nearly one-third of burglars entering a property through an unlocked access point, having a few extra locks can easily deter potential burglars.
Man's Best Security - owning a dog, even smaller breeds, is a major deterrent to a potential home intruder. Dogs bark and sometimes bite Most burglars look for "easy" targets, with reduced risks of detection, apprehension, and physical harm. Allowing your dog to patrol your home's entire perimeter will make a burglar think twice about trespassing, much less burglarizing your home.
Eyes in the Sky - with the advent of security monitoring "smart" technology, you can now watch your home via WIFI enabled cameras and smart phone. These security systems are relatively cheap and allow you to keep tabs on your home from just about anywhere. Additionally, the mere presence of security cameras may be enough to deter a burglar from breaking into your home. Even installing "dummy" cameras—fake security cameras—can drastically reduce the likelihood that your home will be burglarized.
On and Off - some homeowners believe that leaving the lights on in a few bedrooms is enough to scare-off lurking home intruders. This strategy can backfire and actually alert burglars that you aren't home. When they notice that the same light(s) are left on for nights on end, they will likely be sure that you aren't home. A better strategy is to put a few lights and appliances on timers. For instance, if your television or bedroom lights frequently turn on and off, it will appear that someone is home.
Even worse than having your home burglarized, is being home when the burglary occurs. Having a burglar in your home is terrifying. Fortunately, you can develop a plan of action to deal with a burglary in progress.
Safe Haven - the vast majority of burglaries are committed by criminals who want to avoid confrontation. If you suspect that someone has entered your home, you should have a safe haven to hide in until the burglar leaves. In most homes, the easiest place to create a safe haven is in a closet or bathroom located in a central location. To create a safe haven, you should have multiple deadbolts to secure the door and a secure phone line to making calling the police easier. Many home security contractors can help you create a safe haven if you can't figure out where to put it or how to secure it.
Exit Plan(s) - in addition to a safe haven, it's equally important to have an established exit plan(s) in the event that a criminal enters your home. In order for an exit plan(s) to be effective you must develop a strategy for exiting your home from multiple locations. For instance, if the majority of your home's bedrooms are located on the second floor, you will need to have an established window and ladder to ensure that your family to quickly exit your home without accessing a stairwell. It's important to review your exit plan(s) with your family on an annual basis.
Home burglaries can rob you of your valuable possessions and your family's sense of safety. These steps can help you deter and deal with a home burglary.