Don’t let your mail sit in your mailbox overnight; pick it up every day. Shred mail with sensitive information, like credit card offers. Also, don’t leave your mail in your car. If you do, it’s like you’re advertising where you live.
This may seem like a big “duh,” but we’ve all done it. You’re in a hurry, so you run out the door without setting the alarm and you justify it by saying you’ll only be gone a short time. But, according to SafeWise, most thieves can get in and get what they want in ten minutes or less. Just set the alarm.
When night falls, if your windows aren’t covered, it’s easy for anyone to see into your home. This makes it possible for someone casing your house to see where the interior doors are and where your TV and other electronics are located. Block their view and they’ll move on to another house.
Whenever your sliding patio door isn’t open, place a wood or metal rod in the track to help stop thieves.
The garage is an easy access point for thieves, so keep it closed whenever possible. You don’t want anyone to see what you have in the garage, and leaving the door open is just asking for trouble.
Even if you’re the last one to leave the house in the morning, pretend to say goodbye to someone as you leave. This gives the impression (to anyone watching) that there is someone home and will likely make them think twice about breaking in.
You don’t have to have a dog to have a “Beware of Dog” sign on your house. Deter would-be thieves with signs that say you have a dog, even if you don’t.
Even when you’re home, keep your windows and doors locked. According to the Bureau of Justice, an estimated 3.7 million household burglaries occurred each year on average from 2003 to 2007, and in about 28% of these burglaries, a household member was present during the burglary. According to the same survey, in about 40 percent of the burglaries, the thief gained entry through an unlocked door or window.
You don’t have to keep them in bed with you, but put your car keys on your nightstand while you sleep so they’re within easy reach. Then, if you hear someone trying to break in, you can hit the car alarm button and maybe scare them off.
Sometimes all thieves need to break into a home is a little help. Gardening and power tools can be used to break windows and doors, and a ladder is an invitation to enter an open second-story window.