Ten Essential Tips For Preventing Break-ins When Leaving Your House
Everything is packed; the luggage is in the trunk; everyone is in the taxi en route to the airport and all tickets and passports are with you – the holiday you were waiting for has finally come. Half way through to the airport the usual old-time questions come up: ’Are you sure you locked the front door?” “Will someone find the spare keys hidden in the bushy geranium?”
So this is the time when home security should be given more consideration. Here are our top 10 travel tips to consider when you are leaving your home to travel:
- Join Neighbourhood Watch Scheme
Why don’t you join the neighbourhood watch scheme in your area or simply ask both next door neighbours to check on your property to remove obvious signs of your lack of presence. This is a simple but effective method. 90% of the offenders stated that they avoided properties with signs of occupancy.
Bursting out on Twitter and Facebook on your next travel plans and specific dates aren’t a good idea. Either way Facebook and Twitter have their new security settings, which can restrict people or users from outside going through your profile. But still – you never know, because coverage on those social network sites can give potential criminals a heads-up on when your home will be empty!
- Keep Baggage Tags hidden
This might sound stupid, but keep your baggage tags with the addresses hidden during the whole journey if possible. Studies have shown that burglars often head to airports and check for the baggage tags quickly before making their move. Make sure it’s not yours they write down! So please keep in mind that the thieves are intelligent and adapt to suit potential opportunities.
- Spare Keys
Maybe the doormat was a fine place to hide your keys a few DECADES ago, but in the 21st century the burglars are keeping up with time. Hence, hiding your spare keys in an obvious place, you may be reducing your inconvenience in the case that you lock yourself out, but increases the chance of finding yourself in a much more inconvenient position of being robbed. The safest place for a spare key would be with a trustworthy neighbour or two, but if you must hide it – be creative. Invite your friends over and let them guess your hiding place, in order to find the perfect hiding place.
- Cancel Daily and Weekly Subscriptions
The build-up of milk or leaving weekly magazines on the door is a classic mistake traveller before they go away. Because if you think about it, nothing informs a burglar better that no one is home than a doorstep full of unused items.
- ‘Locked your doors and windows?’
This is the ultimate trick question that you get asked every single time before leaving. However, reports show that doors and windows account for the entry point of 70% and 27% of all UK burglaries respectively.
You might want to invest your money in better locks or burglar-proof glass on windows for a possible upgrade. So it’s not a smart idea to go for a cheap door or lock. Try getting deadbolt or a knob-in-lock set with a dead latch. Or you really invest into a keyfree door lock, allowing you to access and protect your property without a key. No more lost or stolen keys and this will make burglars surely give up on getting into your property.
- Light Timers
This technology can save you from numerous burglaries at night time. Even setting up timers for radios can create the impression that someone is at home. In fact, it wouldn’t
surprise anyone that 56% of the burglaries reported occurred at night.
- Important Documents
Never leave documents around the house, after your security got breeched. Criminals can take and cause further mischief. Hence, try to store your bank details, pin codes or other important documents in a safe or with a trustworthy family member/ close friend.
You might have not thought about this little thing. Adjust your telephone ring to its lowest volume, as an unanswered phone alerts burglars of an empty house. Moreover, technology is moving forward to synch your mobile devices with your alarm systems via several apps. You will have possible access to your alarm system and CCTV, in order to keep updated from your holiday resort. However, the software and service fees are still horrendous.
By following these simple tips before you go, you can finally kick back, relax without worries of your home security and enjoy your holiday!
About The Author: Sachi works for Yale Composite Doors and frequently writes about home security and safety.