Simple security measures can reduce the opportunity for crimes to occur. Residential security does not have to be expensive or elaborate. Listed below are some “common sense” tips homeowners can follow to make their homes less vulnerable.
1. Secure ALL entrances at night and when leaving, close and lock all doors, windows, garage doors, sun deck, porch doors and basement doors.
2. When moving into a new apartment request that ALL locks be changed. Make sure you do the same when moving into a new house.
3. Close garage doors when you are at home or away. An open door and and empty garage usually indicates an empty home and often allows easy access into the home through an attached garage.
4. When working upstairs, in the basement or yard, lock up all your doors and windows.
5. Don’t leave articles such as bikes, tools, mowers, etc., on your yard, sidewalks, the lawn, the porch or in areas easily accessible to the general public even for a few minutes.
6. Lighting—turning interior lamps on with a timer is inexpensive and highly recommended. External lighting is also important, but exclusive use of outside lighting when the home is unoccupied may actually tip off the burglar that no one is home. Leave the television or radio playing when leaving for short periods of time.
7. Hiding keys—an extra key hidden in a secret location should be avoided at all costs. Leave the key with a family member that does not reside with you, or if possible with a neighbor you trust.
8. Store ladders inside. Don’t leave them loose outside. If you can’t put them inside, lock them securely. Same goes for grills and barbeques.
9. Be alert for suspicious activities. If you see unfamiliar persons loitering in or around a neighbor’s yard, don’t be afraid to check their identity with your neighbor by phone.
10. Be cautious about admitting strangers. Identification of a salesperson, public utilities representative and repair personnel should always be required before opening the door. A wide-angle door viewer is an absolute must if visibility of visitors is not possible.