There are many things that you can do to the exterior of your house or in the yard to deter burglars and make it more difficult to force entry.
- Keep your shrubbery cut back so that it doesn’t block windows and doors.
- Secure window air conditioners from the inside.
- Illuminate as much of your property as possible.
- Exterior doors should be solid, not hollow. Metal doors provide the best protection against forced entry.
- Use a fencing style that would not conceal a burglar’s activities. Remember if you can’t see out, others can’t see in.
- Secure any glass that is less than 40′ from a door lock. Either coat exterior glass with an acrylic or polycarbonate to strengthen, or replace with laminated or tempered glass.
- Door hinges that are on the outside should have a non-removable center pin that can’t be tampered with.
- Install deadbolt locks.
- Dogs are great deterrents to burglars. Even a strategically placed “Beware of Dog” sticker can make a burglar think twice. Of course, vicious dogs are never a good idea. If your dog bites someone, you might find yourself in court. A dog that barks is better than one that bites.
- Place hinged security bars over basement windows. Remember to keep the key nearby for emergency exits.
- Pin sliding patio doors together when closed. Another easy security step is to drill a hole in the upper track and insert a screw that extends out into the runner to prevent the door from being lifted up and out of its track.
- Ensure that a burglar cannot access the roof from high trees or a ladder left outside.
What NOT to Do
- Don’t put up a nameplate outside of your house with your full name. A burglar can use this information to look up your number in the phone book and call to see if you are home.
- Don’t leave a note on the door or in the mailbox telling a friend/family member that you aren’t home.
- Don’t leave spare keys in an obvious place such as the mailbox or under the front door mat. This makes it very easy for a burglar to rob your house quickly without forcing entry.
- Don’t leave cash and handbags in view in your home.
- Don’t leave any doors unlocked when you are at the other end of the house or in the yard.