You’re getting ready to leave on a family vacation and you’re going through the checklist of things that need to be done to protect your home while you’re gone. You’ve stopped the newspaper, you’re having a neighbor pick up your mail and keep an eye on the house, and you’ve set timers for your lights and are leaving a television on.
Would it surprise you to learn that most burglars don’t care if you’re gone for an extended period of time when they strike? Their only concern is that you’re gone. Because of this, in addition to securing things when you go on vacation, you should be thinking about keeping your home safe while you’re out for the day.
How and When Do Burglars Strike?
About every 18 seconds, a burglary takes place in the United States. That means that around 4,800 burglaries happen every single day. To prevent your home from being among these statistics, it pays to look at things from a burglar’s perspective and understand how they operate.
Although homeowners spend a lot of time worrying about things that go bump in the night, statistics show that most burglaries actually happen between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Why? During these hours, most residents in a house (and the surrounding houses) will be at work or school. This means that no one will be present in the house they’re targeting … and no one will likely be around to notice a crime taking place.
Once a thief begins their work, they can be in and out of a home in less than 10 minutes. They’ll typically search for an unlocked door or window to gain quiet, easy access. Once inside, they’ll head to the master bedroom to look for the most valuable items — jewelry, weapons, and cash. On their way back through the house, they’ll grab any electronics or expensive trinkets they see along the way.
After a burglar strikes, they’re rarely caught and arrested. In 2014, only 13.6% of burglaries resulted in an arrest. That’s not only disappointing to a victimized homeowner; it’s unnerving to know that the bad guy who was prowling around inside your home is still out there.
Keeping Your Home Safe While You’re Out For the Day Starts with Common Sense
Thankfully, you can keep burglars at bay with a few common sense precautions. First, make sure all your doors and windows are locked when you leave for the day. Don’t forget sliding glass doors that are usually located on the hard-to-see back of a home. This includes the door from your garage into your home. Many homeowners leave this door unlocked, but a stolen garage door remote or garage door sensor malfunction can leave your home open and vulnerable.
Next, keep up on your landscaping. Trim back trees and bushes that obscure access points such as doors and windows. Thieves love to have areas where they can enter and exit unseen by passersby and neighbors. Also be sure to trim away any branches that could provide easy access to your second-story windows.
To top off the common sense steps you can take to protect your home, don’t make rookie mistakes like hiding a key under a doormat or in a planter. Thieves are smart and resourceful and they want to gain quiet and easy access, remember? One of the first things they’ll do is check all of the usual places to see if they can find a key.
The Ultimate Protection: A Home Security System
The best defense against home invasion is one that prevents it from ever being attempted. That means that the most effective method of keeping your home safe while you’re out for the day is getting a professionally-installed home security system. A report by the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of North Carolina showed that nearly 60% of convicted burglars said that they were more likely to pass on by if they saw that a home had a security system.
If a thief does attempt to gain entry, sensors on your doors and windows will sound an alarm and notify you and the monitoring company. The system will also be triggered in the event of a glass break.
Another great aspect of modern security systems is video surveillance that can be remotely monitored via smartphone apps. This helps you sort out real break-ins from false alarms. It’s also helpful in identifying perpetrators so they can be located and arrested later.
With a bit of preparation, common sense, and an expertly-installed home security system, your house will always be safe — whether you’re relaxing at the beach or working away at the office!
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.