How to protect your house from break-ins

How to protect your house from break-ins
Photo: Burst, Pexels.

According to an in-depth analysis conducted by Budget Direct, WA was ranked the second-highest in break-ins per population with 41,700 break-ins and 4.3% of households being targeted by thieves in 2017.

Searching for a reason to burgle your home, it takes thieves less than 5 minutes to enter your property.

Houses that appeared vacant or unoccupied, rubbish bins left outside on the curb, no lights turned on at night, and an overflowing mailbox was just some reasons thieves used to target a premise.

A great number of thefts are committed when we make it easier for burglars to do their jobs and this is quite evident with the report stating 40% of thefts occurred through an unlocked door.

Here are some simple tips that you can implement immediately to protect your home from break-ins.

1. Secure your home before going to bed

We know this sounds obvious but with unlocked doors being the main source of entry for most thieves we can’t stress this one enough. Make sure your home is secure at all times, this includes before going to bed. Fit keyed locks to all windows with double-keyed deadlocks on doors, this makes it harder for thieves to exit your home with large items.

Install deadbolts on all sliding doors and get high-quality lockable mesh screens which add another layer of protection. Lock all doors and windows at all times, even during the day — it only takes seconds for a thief to enter your backdoor and walk out with something while your in another room.

Most common methods of entry include:

  • Unlocked doors – 40%
  • Unlocked windows – 28%

Both methods are completely preventable.

2. Install an alarm system

Security systems are proven to be one of the most effective ways to deter thieves, with 49.1% of detainees saying a working alarm system would deter them from the property.

3. Install motion sensor lights

Burglars prefer to creep in the shadows and don’t like being in the spotlight. Install motion sensor lights around your home in the front and back yards, along pathways, and near your garage to keep the thieves at bay.

According to the report, sensor lights deterred 22.8% of thieves.

4. Don’t advertise you’re on holiday

If you plan on going away for quite some time, make sure you have a friend or relative come and collect your mail and bring your bins back in. Overflowing mail and bins left on the curb are clear indications that nobody is home.

The same goes for social media or Gumtree. Try not to announce to the online world that you won’t be home for a couple of weeks or that you’re selling your television because you’re leaving the country for a few months.

How to protect your house from break-ins
Photo: Neshom, Pixabay.

5. Leave a light on

If you’re going out for the night leave a light on. Whether it’s in the kitchen, living room or porch, leaving a light on inside the house deterred up to 19.3% of thieves on the pretense that someone is at home.

6. Don’t display valuables

How many of us have a small dish or tray on the dining table or kitchen countertop where you just dump your keys and wallet? Leaving your valuables out in the open is like sending a party invitation to a burglar saying ‘Come rob me!’.

Ensure all valuables have been put away into a drawer or cupboard and out of sight from any window or door.

7. Get a furry friend!

A barking dog is the best deterrent, with 61.4% of thieves avoiding homes with a barking dog. Plus, you get a new best friend, what is there to lose?

8. Lock side gates, garden sheds and garage doors

Back entrances that are out of sight provide a runway for thieves to break and enter away from the spotlight. Ensure these gates are locked along with motion sensor lights to ward off any potential lurkers.

Garden sheds and garages, in particular, are full of tools and expensive items that thieves can either sell or use to break into your home with, so make sure these have been locked. Installing motion sensor lights around these vicinities can also help reduce theft. If you are looking at replacing your garage door, opt for a sectional garage doors as they tend to be more secure than roller doors.

9. Install security cameras

Whether fake or real, security cameras have been proven to be a very successful deterrent with 35.7% of people surveyed thought that fake security cameras were enough. Thieves do not want to be identified, even just a single prominent camera at the front of the house will be a strong deterrent.

Coupled with some motion sensor lights and you have yourself a fortified home.

The best way to prevent burglars from targeting your home is to make sure everyone in the household understands the risks. By educating your kids and family you can ensure that all windows and doors are locked when anyone leaves the property and that all valuables are kept tucked away and hidden.

By following these 9 simple steps to protect your home you give your household the best possible chance at deterring thieves and avoiding a break-in.