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Most residential burglaries occur during the daytime when people are at work or school, and going away on vacation makes their homes even more attractive as targets. Prevention starts with understanding how burglars think. They look for homes that are unoccupied and unprotected, easy to access through concealed entry points, and blessed with good escape routes. In many cases they only need 60 seconds to break into a home. Make your home unattractive as a target, and burglars may pass it by.

Prevention steps

  •  Doors and locks: Make sure exterior doors are made of solid wood or metal and secured with a heavy-duty deadbolt lock with a one-inch throw bolt and a heavy-duty knob-in-lock set with a dead-latch mechanism. Don't forget garage and back doors, which burglars know are often the weakest entry points. For sliding glass doors, place a strong metal or wooden bar inside the tracks and make sure the doors cannot be lifted out of their tracks. Lock vehicles left behind and park them inside the garage, if possible.
  • Windows: Close all window latches and, for extra security, put in place a secondary blocking device such as a wooden dowel or through-the-frame pin. Make sure the blocking device can be easily removed from bedroom windows in case of fire.
  • Lighting: Create the illusion of occupancy with light-timers on interior lights near the front and back windows with the curtains drawn. Similarly, put exterior lighting on the front of a property on a timer-unless you want burglars to think you're out of town. For exterior lighting around the back, consider security lights with infra-red motion sensors. Locate a few lights where burglars can't remove or easily break the bulbs.
  • Telephone: Lower the ringer volume on telephones so that it cannot be heard from outside.
  • Neighbors: Ask a trusted neighbor to pick up your mail and newspapers and oversee vendors such as lawn mowing services. Encourage him to park in your empty driveway once in a while and even give him a key to check inside your home to make sure all is well. Don't leave a key hidden in flower pots, under doormats, or on ledges.
  • Landscaping: Trim tree branches up to six feet off the ground; trim your shrubs down to three feet. This makes it easier for neighbors to monitor your yard and minimizes hiding places for burglars.
  • Alarm systems: Besides arming your alarm system before you leave, make sure you have alarm company signs near the front and rear doors and alarm decals on ground floor windows to deter burglars. Don't keep your alarm pass code near the alarm keypad. If you don't have an alarm system, consider getting one, especially if you live in an isolated area.
  • Home safe: If you can't store all of your valuable articles and documents in a bank safe deposit box, home safes can help thwart the quick-hit burglar or dishonest housekeeper. Make sure the safe is anchored to the floor or wall and located away from the master bedroom or closet.


Following these steps should significantly reduce the chance that a home will be targeted for burglary, but no system is fool proof.Therefore, it's always good to keep an up-to-date inventory of your possessions to make filing an insurance claim easier.

By: Delta General

For more information, contact us at 713-515-5774 or 713-858-8113



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