SECURITY

7 Mistakes That Burglars Love You To Make…

home-burglar-alarm

Each year, more than 2 million homes are breached by burglars – a burglary every 15 seconds.

There are many mistakes that a home burglar would love you to make.

Here are a few of them:

 

LEAVING THE BURGLAR ALARM SYSTEM OFF

For those who have a home burglar alarm system, all too often it is not activated when running out for on a quick errand. You may be surprised that the majority of houses robbed do have alarm systems – and more than half the time the alarm system is not turned on and activated.

 

UNLOCKED BACK DOOR

The back door of a home is often not as secure as the front door, and may even be unlocked — and burglars know it. Do not overlook the back door. Secure it the same way as you would the front door. When you’re going out, be sure to think of (and lock) the back door when you leave.

Tip: I use these on both my front and back doors at night:
Master Lock Security Bar

 

HIDING VALUABLES IN THE BEDROOM

The first place that burglars often look is in the bedroom. The underwear drawer, sock drawer, all dresser drawers, the bedside table, under the mattress, high closet shelves, etc.. Find other places to hide your valuables. Note that burglars almost never go through kids rooms… (hint).

 
More mistakes (tips) that a burglar hopes that you make…

 

WINDOWS COMPLETELY BLOCKED WITH LANDSCAPING

Tall bushes and shrubs give burglars the privacy they need to work on opening windows without being seen. Keep all bushes trimmed to below window level.

 

LEAVING LIGHTS ON ALL THE TIME WHEN AWAY

A light that is always on when you’re away (either inside or outside) is a signal to burglars that you are away from home. Use outdoor motion lights (these are the best) for nighttime burglar deterrence. Utilize timers connected to indoor lights for a “lived in” look, or other clever burglar deterrents such as the shimmering lights emanating from a TV (FakeTV) to appear as though you’re home.

Related Article: “Fake TV” Review

Related Article: The Best Outdoor Motion Detector Light Review

 

HAVING MAIL DELIVERY STOPPED

If you trust your neighbor, it is better to have them pick up your mail than having mail delivery stopped while you are away. You may trust your mail carriers, but the fact is that you don’t know who else is getting the information. So keep your plans quiet when possible.

 

BROADCASTING YOUR PLANS ON SOCIAL MEDIA

With today’s wide use of social media, it is tempting to tell all your ‘friends’ that you’re going out and/or broadcast your pictures and experiences while you are away. Be cautious though that your circle of ‘friends’ on social media may have expanded well beyond your real friends – and you don’t know who all may be getting that information. Keep it quiet…

 
Related Article: 21 Things Your Burglar Won’t Tell You

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25 Comments

  1. In the country side, I think deterrence is best. We have several real security cameras around the property and I’m sure to hint to service people, neighbors etc that “Gee we saw that white SUV was …….”

    But since the police steal more in civil forfeiture, I make sure our cars are legal and bland. Drive the speed limit or slightly slower then the flow but never over 10. Turn signals… always and mild mannered.

  2. Having been a victim of a burglary about 10 years ago, I would add that burglars LOVE an easy-to-enter door, especially those with an easy-to-pry door latch. Our place was breached via a side door (solid metal doors), and they used a simple crowbar to break the doorframe loose and away from the simple dead bolt. The burglars had monitored our place from a side-road that leads to neighboring homes behind our property — but we didn’t find this out until later, when I called neighbors to warn them. Then a neighbor told me they had seen men in a beat-up truck from West Virginia parked by our property line but they thought I’d hired them to clear some trees. Uh…no.

    We learned and made improvements. Now, all door frames are now more securely attached to the walls with very long screws, a better deadbolt locking system, locked glass doors in front of the doors, a security system, motion detection lights, and indoor dogs. If we leave the home/property, we set the alarm. Period! Do NOT rely on any neighbor, most are in-their-own-world and unreliable. Do NOT rely on police to get there ‘in time’, even with a security system, the cops are NOT able to get to the home within 3 minutes of the alarm (that’s about how long a burglar is in the home).

    Since we believe burglaries and home invasions are going to continue to increase, we are now adding in several more motion detection lights and that will cover all sides of our home, plus all corners. We are also adding an additional stationary flood light that will be on all night, focused at the driveway. We have a locked gate and 4-board horse fencing all around the home (with double fencing around the house in the front and one side, but a burglar can hop a fence. What they could not do unless they break the metal livestock gate or locking system is drive in w/ a truck to take large items or move the safe. But most burglars are not after large items.

    We were robbed on a school day and no one was home. They obviously knew this from watching the home. When we were robbed, my mattress was flipped off the box springs (hoping to find cash stashed there). All drawers were out of the chest, nightstand, and the dresser. The top shelf of my closet had been arm-swiped to see if jewelry, cash, firearms might have been ‘hidden’ under folded sweaters. A desk in another room had the drawer pulled and tossed on the floor. Same actions in the living room. Bedrooms of the kids were untouched except for a bass guitar that was stolen (the lead guitar in another room was left behind, maybe unseen). No computers, TVs, videos, artwork on walls, collectibles, or appliances were taken. They got cash, some jewelry, and the guitar. It was a quick in and out ordeal. They took a pillowcase to hold their ‘stash’ and I have learned this is typical.

    In this area, barns and sheds are being burglarized. Tools and tack equipment (horse) are being stolen for resale. Homes under construction are also targets — the burglars go for any appliance and a few doors from us, a family had their well pump stolen before they moved in. That is SO low!

    If you think being burglarized won’t happen to you, ask yourself what makes you so special? lol

  3. Well, I do not do social media, but I guess I do everything else wrong. My back door is almost always unlocked and the police, my friends, and my neighbors know it. That is so someone can come in and rescue my pets in case of fire and also so someone can get in to rescue me if I fall or have a heart attack, or something. My front door is usually unlocked also.

    I love my lilac bushes that completely block my bedroom window from the street. I like the privacy they give me.

    I don’t have many valuables, but most of the ones I do have are in my bedroom, including my wedding ring, my grandmother’s wedding ring, my small collection of silver dollars, and the handgun that I keep by my bed. My other valuables are my pets; my cats would hide and my dog would help the burglars carry the loot out of the house.

    I don’t have a burglar alarm and on the few occasions that I leave home for a few days, I have my mail stopped. If I didn’t, my mail lady would worry about my uncollected mail and alert the police that I might be in trouble.

    The good news is that, although we do have business burglaries occasionally in Northern Wyoming, you never hear about residential burglaries. Every household owns guns. If your door is unlocked, it looks like someone is home & would-be burglars won’t walk into a house where they know the homeowner is armed.

    1. Have been a general contractor for over thirty years and have seen the aftermath of home burglars as I get to fix the house. You may only have a few rings and few valuable things. The big problem is how much is your life worth? Now days the bad people will kill you for the gold in your teeth and don’t want any witnesses. The bushes to close to the house can let bugs,mold,moisture and dry rot in. If I need to fix the siding,windows or paint the house they got to go. Plus I have been to houses that a V.C. company could hid in the bushes around them and no one would know. My home deadbolt keyed,security film on all glass,motion lights,cameras inferred,exterior metal door to master bedroom. The front door is metal with a bar and 3/8 AR-500 sheet on the inside so it will stop small arms fire. We live in the middle of no where but we are still ready to rock and roll day or night. Can’t go into everything but let’s just say it starts at the front gate and runs to the back US Forestry fence.

      1. Southernman,

        My car was burglarized in 1984 while I was attending a class. They broke into the car, got into the glove box, threw everything on the floor of the car including a plain envelope that held $300 cash (which was still on the floor of my car when I came back.) The only thing they took was a small wallet that had my driver’s license and about $10. But they did over a thousand dollars damage to my car and I had to replace my license. If I hadn’t locked it, they would probably have assumed there was nothing of value. If they had gotten in, all I would have lost was the wallet and had probably no damage to my car.

        But you are right, that the danger to a person in the house is not to be ignored. If I lived anywhere else, I would definitely lock up; it is just that in this town I feel safe. If the SHTF I would use my deadbolts for sure. I had them installed when I bought my new doors, but have never used them. I sometimes latch the screen and used to lock the door locks (not the dead bolts) when my crazy neighbor was still living next door.

  4. Thankfully I dont have a facebook or similar account. Don’t trust the police because even they don’t want you to report illegal drugs directly to them due to dirty cops selling informant info to organised crime. People are advised to call crime stoppers. Also with so much violent crime burglaries are on a low priority list. I figure that I live in an immoral country and cannot trust any institution within it. Self serving yuppie bureaucrats are in charge. I am becoming a minamalist and don’t own expensive jewelry or watches except for a cheap timex watch. I try to have the outside of my place looking a touch run down compared to the neighbors. My beware of dog sign is fake. When I retire and am home all day first job is to spruce up the place to sell and move into an apartment condo.

  5. The doors in the house that I am moving into have glass in the top part. Also has deadbolts but I don’t see those being very effective due to the glass. The area is low crime but then you just never know. I like the looks of the door security bar that Ken posted.

    1. Yes, that door security bar ads SIGNIFICANT resistance to a forced break-in. It’s such a simple concept and cheap insurance for one’s general home security.

    2. aka

      Someone can just break the glass and reach in and unlock the deadbolt. Even if you change the locks to the type of lock that requires a key on both sides, someone could possibly still enter through the glass at the top of the door. I’m not sure if they could also disable a security bar through the open space. Also, if there is a fire, there is a potential risk of being unable to get out of your house if you use a lock that requires a key from the inside. In an emergency you might not be able to find the correct key.

      I would change the doors. Get insulated steel doors with a peephole. You will eventually save on energy costs since the insulated door will do a better job of keeping the cold air out than the glass. I replaced my doors right after I bought this house. I have no more cold drafts and the new door feels warmer than the old one [in winter] when you touch it. It was not terribly expensive, even though I had to hire the work done. The doors themselves are not that expensive; the majority of the cost was labor.

    3. 3-M security film inside and out you can do it with a little time and youtube or have a glass company do it. Long screws in hinge plates and anti pry hardware on door and jams and a kick bar.

      1. Both good suggestions. I’m a little claustrophobic and will be looking at either making a couple of the existing windows bigger or adding a couple so I hate to give up windows at all. I’ll be installing storm/screen doors maybe that will make difference. Will also look at the 3m stuff- hadn’t thought of that at all.

      2. The 3M film is great, but if you install it without it behind the frame, the glass will break at that point. Granted, it will be a bit harder to get in, but it is much better to remove the glass from the frame, install the film and then attach the frame.
        For those that have alarms; If your house is configured like ours, we put the alarm on Away, not stay mode. It gives you more security with the motion sensors while sleeping.

        1. Nice to know about that. These doors are the typical small panes of glass reminds a person of a tic tac toe grid. Would be hard to put the film behind the frames.

        2. You can also get alarms with “Night-Stay” mode. Ours is set to arm everything but the bedrooms. We have glass break sensors on every floor as well as motion sensors in every room.

  6. I have my best friend watching my place a 98 pound german shepherd name BEAR. Most people don’t want to try there luck with him. He is my third german shepherd I have live here for almost 38 years with no problems. Burglars are lazy people they look for easy targets.

  7. I have bars on all windows, storm doors an alarm system plus two barking dogs in the backyard. If they wanna get through all that I guess they can have my stuff

  8. Out in the boonies, if a POS burglar wants in they WILL get in, only thing you can really do is make it very difficult for them, and make it not worth their time to come back 3 days later. Most burglars know exactly how long it will take for the LEO’s to show up, remembering that when seconds count, the police are only minutes away, those minutes are what the POS’s work on. Average response time 11 minutes, in the HUGE cities, 56 minutes…… in the rural areas, too long, 30 minutes plus.

    So how do you to keep the bad-guys out? Ya can’t. But;
    Cameras, Real or Fake, mount them where they can be seen coming up the drive and other places.
    Good solid doors and bars on the windows will only slow them down some; good if your home, not so much if you’re gone. Problem is can you get out FAST if needed, let’s say a fire…..
    Don’t leave ‘stuff’ you want to keep out for them to get, Safes are a good investment. Even Gun safes are good for storing valuables and documents in. And cheap.
    Motion Lights are GREAT, but most burglaries are during the day when no one is home, though motion lights are GREAT for lighting up Bambi and the ‘boyfriend’ when bringing the DD home after 2:00AM.

    It’s usually true, a POS will look for easy targets first, except when your way the heck out in BFriggenE they won’t care if they know you have something they want, ……..

    FYI, someone (or a group) wired on drugs, will not care about anything, they know they will get off in court and be back on the street in a month, and they WILL remember you. Not by any means suggesting anything at all here, but; Double Tap only if you’re in danger or protecting your life and property.

    NRP

    1. Now there you go…bursting the folks’ ‘safe zone’ bubble! LOL We can warn all we want but as I said, “If you think being burglarized won’t happen to you, ask yourself what makes you so special?”

      (And you are right about daytime burglaries and drug-consumed crazies!) I have a brother in law enforcement. Oh, the stories…

      1. Modern Throwback
        Like you we were not special but they did rob us. During a wild fire which they used to conceal the theft in our home, then set it on fire. We did not realize what had occurred until some time later.
        As they say KARMA has a way of getting back at those who do evil. They are wanted, homeless and on the run.

  9. You can pull out the bottom drawer of a dresser and put items on the floor as long as the front doesn’t have a profile that allows you to see underneath. When drawers are searched,they are rarely pulled completely out.

  10. We had a gang of thieves driving around in plain panel trucks or white vans wearing short sleeve white shirts looking like delivery people back in California.

    I caught a pair pulling into driveway as I was leaving to shoot Trap that evening. I walked up to them and noted the van was empty, no possebox or receipt book with invoices, no company logo on the truck or their shirts.

    I took note of their license plate and asked them what they were doing there. They stammered that they were making deliveries. (with an empty van) They left as I called the police.

    Found out later that those boys were part of a larger crew stealing appliances and copper wire from New Construction around our town.

    They did not bum – rush me as I had the 12 gauge out and stoked with buckshot. Freaked out the neighbors though. (Turns out the sight of me holding my shotgun and a plain white van in my driveway lead to multiple calls to 911 from my neighbors.)

  11. Get Hurricane glass doors and windows. Much better than the 3m.

    Make sure it is Class D missile or Miami-Dade County Standard rated (class C is common, as well as other inferior ratings), it is almost impossible to break. I live in Colorado and had to have the windows specially ordered. There are quite a few companies that make them and they all are more expensive, but well worth it. I installed the Simonton StormBreaker Plus in my house, it was far cheaper than the Pella or Anderson windows, but it is plastic frames.

    My back door is a Simonton sliding glass door with hurricane glass, installed in the frame with 3.5″ case-hardened screws (as is all my doors and windows, I use the Phillips Square-Driv Durafast screws), a Charley Bar flip down security bar (for pry attacks), and a steel bar screwed into the top of the track so the door can not be preyed off the tracks. I ordered the door without a key lock on the outside (google bump keys). It is actually easier to come in the side of the house than the back door. All the windows double lock.

    Search YouTube for the video “Simonton hurricane windows” and look at those. The one labeled “Prepare for Hurricane Season with Impact-Resistant Windows” is very good. You can also watch the videos of actual burglaries where the hurricane windows stopped entry.

    Some other brands you can also look at (there are many): Anderson Coastal Windows and Doors With Stormwatch; or Pella HurricaneShield windows.

  12. In the 1980’s my fathers truck was broken into while it was parked in the driveway— was done at night while we were home.
    We were always taught to lock the front door when coming inside the house.
    I still do it to this day.
    Front has a screen glass door—always locked along with the wooden door;
    always locked===bolt, reg lock & chain.
    Have 2 back doors. outside back door keep locked–even locksmith couldn’t open it, from outside backdoor–you go thru very small back porch thru another door–kept locked all the time–into kitchen,
    There is a window in back porch that is part of parents bedroom.
    Father fixed that window where people could not raise it from outside.
    He also did that to windows in living room where you couldn’t open from
    outside.
    The backyard has a 6 ft fence around it & there is a street light in the alley.
    No bushes are in front of any window except the ones in front of the house.
    While shopping for another house I am keeping a lot of this in mind while I look. Have learned that people in north Carolina also steal livestock.

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