When you’ve been wearing five layers of clothing for the past three months and the only time you’ve spent outdoors has been running to and from your car, it can be tempting to broadcast selfies poolside to your entire social network on your winter getaway. After all, it’s often the quickest way to make your 350 closest friends green with envy. Stop and think, how well do really know those 350 people? Are they all close acquaintances or are some people you met once at a golf outing or cocktail party? It’s sad to think, but posting vacation pics during your trip can actually act as a notification for burglars that your home is vacated. This is especially true when your social media reach expands beyond just those you’ve officially friended. Certainly, any home can be a target for crime but there are things you can do to make your home less attractive to burglars. Here are a few:
Your Front Door: Your front door is your first defense against intruders. Have you ever accidentally locked yourself out of your home and been able to let yourself back in using nothing more than a credit card? If you answered yes, chances are a burglar will easily be able to do the same. For the most secure front door possible, make sure that if the door does have a window, it’s not close enough to the door handle so that if a thief broke the window, they’d simply be able to unlock the door. With regards to materials, steel doors are a great option because they are resistant to fire, cracking and warping. An added bonus is their affordability and their ability to be filled with foam for added insulation.
Landscaping: Tall bushes and trees can be gorgeous accents to your property. However, when they butt up directly to your home, they provide potential thieves an excellent spot to hide out. Keep them trimmed back, or better yet, further away from your home.
Sliding Glass Doors: Sliding glass doors are often a point of pride in a home. An obvious suggestion to deter break-ins is to keep the blinds on them closed when you are away from home. Older sliding glass doors can be a thief’s dream because they can be popped off their frame even when they’re locked, something that is less easy to do in new models. As an added safety measure, keep sliding glass doors locked when not in use and place a sturdy dowel or steel bar in the groove. This will act as a barrier in the event that the door’s lock is picked.
Windows: Windows can be another easy way to gain access into a house, particularly if they’re on the first floor. An obvious safety measure is to keep windows locked at all times when not in use. If you’re considering upgrading your home’s windows, it’s worth taking a look at triple pane windows. Homeowners rave about their energy efficiency because they have three layers of glass. Having three layers of glass also means that they’re much more difficult to break into than low-grade single pane windows. Additionally, the locks on new windows are much more secure than those on older models.
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