Burglary Prevention

The most important thing you can do is call the police to report a crime or any suspicious activity. You have to be the eyes of your neighborhood. And remember you can always remain a pair of anonymous eyes! Please also refer to the Burglary Prevention Flyer (PDF).

General Prevention Tips

  • Arrange for your lawn to be mowed if you are going away for an extended time.
  • Check your locks on doors and windows and replace them with secure devices as necessary.
  • Do not allow daily deliveries of mail, newspapers or flyers to build up while you are away. Arrange with the Post Office to hold your mail, or arrange for a friend or neighbor to collect them regularly.
  • Keep your garage door closed and locked.
  • Leave lights on when you are not home. If you are going to be away for a length of time, connect some lamps to automatic timers to turn them on in the evening.
  • Lock all outside doors and windows before you leave the house or go to bed. Even if it is for a short time, lock your doors.
  • Make your home look occupied, and make it difficult to break in.
  • Other windows may need better locks. Check with a locksmith or hardware store for alternatives.
  • Pushbutton locks on doorknobs are easy for burglars to open. Install deadbolt locks on all your outside doors.
  • Sliding glass doors are vulnerable. Special locks are available for better security.

Do Not Tempt a Thief

  • Always lock your garden sheds and garages.
  • Lawn mowers, barbecues and bicycles are best stored out of sight.
  • Never leave notes on your door such as “Gone shopping.”
  • Use curtains on garage and basement windows.

Locks

  • Change locks immediately if your keys are lost or stolen.
  • No lock, regardless of its quality, can be truly effective. Key-in dead bolt locks provide minimum security. Ask a locksmith for advice on your situation.
  • When moving into a new home, have all locks changed.

Targeting the Outside

  • Have adequate exterior lighting. A motion-sensitive light is recommended for backyards.
  • Make sure your door hinges are on the inside.
  • Trim trees and shrubs so that they cannot be used as hiding places for intruders.

Windows

  • Drill a 3/16" hole on a slight downward slant through the inside window frame and halfway into the outside frame - place a nail in the hole to secure the window.
  • Most windows can be pinned for security.

Alarms

  • An alarm system is excellent for home security. It provides peace of mind to homeowners, especially while on vacation. There is a wide variety of alarm systems on the market.
  • Make several inquiries to different companies for the best security system available to you.
  • If you have a home alarm system, use it! Activate your alarm system; alarm systems are only useful when you remember to activate them.
  • Many individuals have alarm systems but do not arm them because it is inconvenient. Many burglars know this and will not be deterred by a window sticker or sign indicating that the home has an alarm system.

If Your Home Is Burglarized

  • Do not enter - the perpetrator may still be inside.
  • Do not touch anything or clean up until the police have inspected for evidence.
  • If you come home to find an unexplained open/broken window or door:
  • Note the descriptions of any suspicious persons.
  • Use a neighbor's phone to call police.
  • Write down the license plate numbers of any suspicious vehicles.

Other Precautions

  • Be a good neighbor. If you notice anything suspicious in your neighborhood, call 911 immediately.
  • Consider installing a burglar alarm system.
  • Form a Neighborhood Watch Group. We can help you work with your neighbors to improve security and reduce risk of burglary.
  • Keep a detailed inventory of your valuable possessions, including a description of the items, date of purchase and original value, and serial numbers, and keep a copy in a safe place away from home — this is a good precaution in case of fires or other disasters. Make a photographic or video record of valuable objects, heirlooms and antiques. Your insurance company can provide assistance in making and keeping your inventory.
  • Mark your valuables with your driver's license number with an engraver. Marked items are more difficult for a burglar to dispose of and easier for police to recover.
  • Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other “secret” hiding places - burglars know where to look for hidden keys.
  • Trim the shrubbery around your home to reduce cover for burglars.

Car Burglaries Tips

  • Do not leave doors unlocked.
  • Do not leave the garage door opener in plain view.
  • Do not leave keys in the vehicle.
  • Do not leave out items with personal information.
  • Do not move valuable items to the trunk while in public view.
  • Do not leave valuables in plain view (GPS devices, laptops, cell phones, wallets, etc.)
  • Do not leave windows or sunroof open.