Hopefully, you’ve never experienced and will never experience a break-in. Still, you’re probably aware that they can happen at any time. Statistically, most break-ins occur during the summer, when people travel or leave doors unlocked and windows open. However, a few simple measures can keep your home safe all year round.
A home security system is a good first step. Even better, they can get you a discount on your home insurance. But there are also other things you can do to protect your property, because you may be a target regardless. Here are some simple yet effective methods for deterring burglars.
- Lock your doors and windows. This is probably obvious, but you’d be shocked at the number of people who leave their homes with the door unlocked!
- Update passcodes every now and then. If you’ve had the same garage door code for a decade, you may want to think about updating it. You can also update security system codes for an extra layer of security.
- Draw the curtains and lock your garage. These are two tasks you might not remember to do, which is all the more reason to do them. Pulling the curtains protects your privacy and is a simple way to hide valuables from plain view.
- Install motion-sensor lights. If you have a patio out back, consider adding some motion-activated lights. This can be a major deterrent for a would-be burglar. While you’re at it, make sure your patio door has a sturdy lock. If it doesn’t, you may want to buy a second lock and install it yourself.
- Tidy up your yard. Manicuring your lawn and trimming your hedges do more than make your yard look nice. They take away potential hiding spots. While you’re at it, remove those hidden keys from outside!
- Put lights on a timer. Setting a lamp to turn on every evening makes it look like your home is occupied. This is a great strategy if you plan to be gone for a while! Don’t forget to put your mail on hold, too.
- Don’t publicly announce you’re traveling. Wait until you’re home to post about your trip. Then you won’t have to worry about unwanted visitors taking advantage of you being gone.
- Lock your car as you get out of it. And don’t forget to stash valuables in the trunk. A computer bag or shopping bag sitting on the seat might tempt burglars.
- Don’t leave your apartment door open. Even if you’re running down the hall to the laundry room or trash chute, shut your door behind you. If you notice burned-out lightbulbs or other safety hazards, report them to property management.
- Swap out your locks when necessary. When you move into a new home or apartment, it’s a good idea to change your locks. You should also change your locks if you lose your keys.