Summer months, when people typically take trips out of town, spawn the most burglaries and household property crimes according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Nobody wants to come home after an enjoyable escape to find their home ransacked and valuables missing. By taking some precautions, you can avoid becoming a victim of intruders or thieves and return home to the same comfortable living conditions you left.

 

Home Burglary

 

Here are some tips on how to deter break-ins:

1. Put Your Lights on Timers

When different lamps and overhead lights come on at different times, criminals tend to think someone is home.

Well Lit Home

2. Install an Alarm System

If you don’t already have one, now is the time to secure your home with an alarm. The Insurance Information Institute says you’ll probably get a discount on your homeowners insurance if you do.

Home Alarm System

3. Invest in Deadbolt Locks

Can’t invest in an alarm right now? Then, at least place deadbolts on your doors and windows, making it more difficult for criminals to get inside your home. Or double your protection and use both an alarm and deadbolts.

Deadbolt

4. Set Up a Webcam

Surveillance cameras can be costly, but you can use your webcam for the same purpose at a fraction of the cost. Follow guidance provided by TechHive.

Web Cam

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5. Stop Your Mail

Nothing shouts you’re “not home” like bills, ads and other envelopes piling up in your mailbox. Make sure and stop delivery arrangements online with the U.S. Post Office. Or have a friend or neighbor pick up your mail everyday.

Mail Delivery

6. Suspend Newspaper Delivery

You don’t want old newspapers scattered on your front porch either, so call the newspaper and arrange to put delivery on hold for the length of your vacation.

Newspaper Delivery

7. Keep Quiet on Social Media

Don’t share any details on how long you’ll be gone or where you’re going on Facebook, Twitter or any other social media site. You never know who might have access to your vacation plan posts.

Posting on Facebook

8. Unplug Electronics

This way burglars can’t get a hold of your personal financial information on your computer.This will also save on your electric bill. If you’re using a webcam, you’ll need to keep that computer on.

Unplug Electronics

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9. Turn off Automatic Garage Doors

Intruders have been known to use a universal remote to gain entry into homes through the garage, so shut it down before you leave.

Automatic Garage Doors

10. Remove Portable GPS from Your Vehicle

If you’re flying to your destination and leaving your car at the airport or in nearby airport parking, thieves can steal your car and head right to your home.

Portable GPS

11. Make Your Home Look Lived In

Do what you normally do while at home. If you have the blinds open during the day, don’t close them while on vacation. Have your lawn mowed if you’re going to be gone for a significant amount of time. Also, park a car in your driveway so it looks as if someone is home.

Open Blinds

12. Get Rid of the Hidden House Key

Intruders know all the usual hiding places for extra keys, so unless you have a brilliant no one has ever thought of, don’t bother to conceal one outside at all.

Key Under Rock

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13. Assess Your Yard

Walk around your front and back yards to see if someone could easily be concealed in your shrubbery or bushes. If so, cut them back.

Trim Bush

14. Turn Off Alarm Clocks

You don’t want someone to hear the endless beeping of your alarm, making them realize nobody is inside to turn it off.

Alarm Clock

15. Lock Up

Before you drive away, be sure you’ve checked all the locks and armed your alarm.

Arm Security Alarm

 

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