Police: Burglary Prevention Tips
Burglary Prevention Tips: With the fall time change, brings the darkness sooner. This may bring opportunities to a burglar. Taking a few preventive steps could keep your home from being a target. Don't make it easy for them!
The golden rule in home security is to ensure that your property does not present an opportunity.
A would-be burglar will look for signs of an alarm. Let him know he cannot enter your home unnoticed.
Over 1/3 of home burglaries are termed by police as "no force" entries. Doors or windows that are left unlocked allow easy access to the home.
Ideally, all exterior doors should be made of solid wood. If you have glass in your exterior doors, the burglar can simply smash the glass and open the door.
Sliding glass doors are another easy way in. They are usually at the rear and can often be lifted out of their frame.
An unsecured garage door presents an opportunity for a burglar to enter your property if your garage is attached to the home, or to find tools to assist him.
An unlocked shed or outbuilding likewise presents an easy target. The burglar can use your own tools to enter your home or take valuables such as bikes and lawnmowers.
A dark property is always attractive. 90% of all intruders choose not to enter a residence that is well lit so keep the main entryways and exterior sections of your home lit, either constantly or using a motion sensor.
Overgrown bushes and trees close to your home allow a burglar to hide and can provide a leverage to higher windows.
A quick escape is important for a burglar, so high fences or hedges are a real deterrent.
Burglars prefer to target empty residences. Stop the newspapers when you go on vacation and have a neighbor pick up your mail.
Residential burglars are usually opportunists so make sure your home does not present the opportunity they are looking for.
1. Install a deadbolt lock.
Deadbolts are usually locked with a key from the outside and a thumb turn on the inside. The cylinder should be pick resistant. Lock your doors every time you leave the house, even if you're leaving for just a few minutes during the day. The most popular times for residential burglaries are weekday daylight hours. In over 1/3 of burglaries, there is no forcible entry--someone forgot to lock the doors.
2. Install solid doors.
Outside doors should be metal or solid hardwood and at least 1 3/4 inches thick. Frames must be made of equally strong material and each door must fit its frame securely.
3. Keep garage doors closed and locked.
4. Secure sliding doors and windows.
Cut a broom handle to the length of the bottom track so that the window or door will not slide open when forced. Also, drill one hole through both casings and sliding window and insert a nail or pin.
5. Secure sash windows.
To prevent wooden sash windows from being pried open, drill a downward sloping hole into the top of the bottom window through and into the bottom of the top window and insert a pin or nail.
To prevent aluminum sash windows from being broken into, purchase a track lock that blocks the window track.
6. Mark your property.
Mark your valuables with an engraver. Marking your property serves as a deterrent to would-be burglars and it helps police in identifying and returning stolen property. Make a property identification list. Put warning stickers on doors and windows. Call HEPD for a free rental of an engraver.
7. Purchase a burglar alarm.
A home alarm system can be a very effective burglary deterrent and fit into many people's needs. Remember to test your system monthly.
8. Leave a light on.
When leaving on trips, leave a light on in the bathroom. In the bedroom, attach a lamp and radio to a 24-hour electric timer set to go on at dusk and off at your bedtime. Close bedroom drapes or blinds.
9. Use proper exterior lighting.
Place a light over every door. Double cones lights on each corner of the house will also light up windows.
10. Work together with your neighbors.
When you are going to be away, tell trusted neighbors and ask them to watch your property. Have neighbors maintain your yard. When on vacation, have someone cut grass. Shrubbery should not hide neighbors' view of windows or doors. Have someone pick up newspapers and mail. Tell neighbors to call police if they notice anything suspicious.
Call the Hoffman Estates Police Community Relations Section for a free home security check at 781-2820