Most homeowners operate under false assumptions about how burglars usually break into a house. They imagine masked characters in dark outfits operating in the dark of night and using high-tech lock-picking tools to quietly enter. Once inside, they stealthily disarm alarms and creep around like villains in a spy movie, carefully sifting through drawers and documents to find the goods they’re after.
Reality isn’t half as organized or exciting. In the real world, up to 30 percent of burglaries happen when a thief simply enters through an unlocked door or window. Once inside, they’ll ransack through your home in a matter of minutes, grabbing things like cash, small electronics, and jewelry before making a quick exit. To discourage all but the most determined of thieves, it’s important to secure the following common home entry points.
The 5 Most Common Home Entry Points
1. Front Door
Even if a large number of thieves enter through an unlocked door, they always use the back door, right? Wrong. Statistics show that 34 percent of burglars enter through the front door. If they’re casual about it, neighbors and passersby often never notice anything amiss.
That’s why it’s important to secure your door with a high-quality deadbolt. The lock bolt itself should extend at least one inch into the doorframe; otherwise, a burglar can easily kick the door in. In addition to this, make sure your home is equipped with a home security system that will alert you if your door is opened while the system is set.
2. Back Door/Sliding Glass Door
The same deadbolt upgrade is important for your back door, as well — especially since back doors are home entry points that are typically in locations where they aren’t as easily seen from the street. If you have a sliding glass door, this poses a couple of risks. One: the latches on sliding glass doors are typically weak. Two: they’re made of glass, so they’re easily broken into. Install security system door sensors on a back door of any kind. If it’s a sliding glass door, make sure to install glass break sensors, as well, to alert you if someone smashes through.
When people secure their homes, they often forget to include their garage as part of the package. You should take the same security precautions with your garage as you do with the rest of your home. After all, your garage likely contains expensive tools and equipment — not to mention your car. Attached garages also offer thieves an unobserved home entry point into your home, so you’ll want to work hard to keep them out.
Make sure to protect your garage with motion detectors, lights, and security cameras. Also, ensure that any door leading from your garage to the interior of your home is equipped with a security door sensor. A Z-Wave garage door opener can even be installed allowing you to open and close your garage door remotely, or even just double check and make sure the garage door is down.
4. First Floor Windows
It’s natural to want to open up those windows and let the springtime air in after a long, cold winter. It’s also a bit concerning to learn that 23 percent of thieves use a first-floor window as their home entry point.
This doesn’t mean that you need to stay cooped up with no warm breezes blowing through your house. Window security sensors aren’t all-or-nothing, open-or-close. You can equip your windows with sensors that notify you if the window is opened beyond a certain point (for instance, because someone is trying to climb through it). This can give you a happy medium between your home feeling stuffy and safe.
5. Second Floor Windows
Although most crooks are going to opt for convenience, if there’s a way for them to access your home through an unlocked second-floor window, they certainly will try. For this reason, install window and glass break sensors on all of your windows and keep those windows locked when you’re not around. The sensors give you the added plus of letting you know whenever your teenager makes an escape attempt.
With these common home entry points covered, you’ll sleep safe and sound knowing that you’ve discouraged all but the most enterprising of thieves.
At ProTech Security, we have a strong history of experience, innovation, and customer service. The ProTech Security Advantage is more than 30 years of service in Northeast Ohio and a strong commitment to providing quality, cost-effective protection for homes, businesses, educational institutions and government facilities. To see what ProTech Security can do for you, contact us today.