Get a quality alarm system
Probably the most effective way to deter burglars is by having a quality home alarm system.
Some companies offer monthly services, whereas nowadays there are many self-installable modules that let you keep an eye on your home.
The advantage of using services such as ADT is that their devices don’t need your internet, and if someone cuts electricity or the internet, you will be notified.
Many of these services have their own staff watching video feeds when alarms go off, and can quickly notify the police if something is amiss.
Check those doors and windows
Many of us settle into a comfort zone in our homes and often put off fixing things. That window that doesn’t properly latch every time. That deadbolt that is outdated by at least 20 years. That back door that is flimsy and weak.
These basic entry points can either make it or break it for a burglar. Nowadays, there are very high quality safety locks that are nearly impossible to pick, and reinforced doors that are impossible to knock down without industrial tools. There are also extra-safe latching windows and porch doors that avoid the problem of being easy entry points.
Upgrading doors and windows could be a fundamental step in securing your home.
Careful with social media
Lots of people can’t wait to post the news of their vacation on social media. Some of us even post when we are in the car on the way out of town. Naturally, once we are at our destinations, often we post away, putting pictures of us in our vacation destinations.
However, you need to be very careful. Is your account public? Can friends of friends see your photos? It would be very easy for someone with bad intentions to see that you are far from home and thus, your home becomes an easy target. We know it’s fun to share pictures, but if you are worried about your home being broken into while you’re gone, it’s best to use discretion.
Be discrete, be aware
Virtually all humans are creatures of habit. You wake up every day at the same time, have your breakfast, go to work, come home. Whether you’re aware of it or not, it is very easy to pick up on your habits just by paying some attention.
The trick is to be somewhat aware of how you project information to others. Always park your car outside when you are home? Start parking it in the garage to create uncertainty. Last one to leave? Say goodbye to a “make-believe” person. Do you leave a note for the UPS man? That’s a clear sign that nobody is home. Do you have a long lunch break? Maybe on some days, you can eat lunch at home to vary things. Essentially, try not to create signs that you are clearly not home during reliable hours. Think that if a burglar is staking your home, you don’t want to be the most predictable, easy target on the block.
Light it up
Few things deter prowlers more than outdoor sensor lights. Imagine, you are trying to creep up on a house and suddenly you are illuminated by a great beam of light. These lights call attention to movement outside and remind whoever might be there that they can be seen or spotted.
Nowadays, you can get good sensor lights that are solar-powered, so you don’t even have to worry about plugging them in. Just mount several of them in key locations around your house and you have an inexpensive and convenient outdoor sensor light system.
Indoor timers are great too. Plug some lights into timers when you are not home and you’ll leave people guessing.
Know your neighbors
Having a good relationship with your neighbours is a brilliant idea. You might be very different people with little in common, but the fact that you cohabit a space together is more than enough reason to be diplomatic and friendly. Have each other’s phone numbers, invite them to a beer from time to time, and offer them a helping hand.
You can let them know when you are out of town, and offer to keep an eye on their place when they are out of town. If something is amiss, it’s never too much to have a neighbour keeping an eye out on your place.
Get a dog
While most dogs might not do anything when a burglar comes, the fact that you have a four-legged friend is a major deterrent.
Even if your dog is more likely to make friends with a person who is breaking in, having a dog that barks when they sense something is a major turn-off for burglars.
If you have a big dog, like a German Shepherd or other watchdog breed, many burglars will simply not take their chances and find easier targets.
Don’t be an easy target
Finally, a lot of it boils down to not being an easy target. Just like anybody, a burglar will be looking to work in the least difficult conditions. There’s an old saying that you should aspire to make your house the hardest one to break into in your neighborhood. It all comes down to not being an easy target.