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So, You Want to Protect Your Place from Burglars?

Six quick tips to help prevent a burglar from breaking into your home.

A couple weeks ago we talked about Fire Extinguishers, and making sure that you know how to use one. Having one, and knowing how to use it can literally save your home from a horrific fire. I know it has in my home.

With this post I want to discuss a few tips that can make your home less desirable for a burglar. While being insured can help you replace stolen items, I'm sure you would rather they never get stolen in the first place.

Install Locks on All Your Doors:

While most of our front doors are very secure. It is the doors on the side and back of the house that normally get broken into. These doors need strong locks too, consider deadbolts for all your outside doors.

Get a Security Sign:

Security signs are great, but they should always be generic, so that burglars don't know what alarm system they are trying to bypass.

Buy a Dog:

Dogs are a man's best friend, unless that man is a burglar. Burglars who hear barking keep walking.

Hang Curtains:

Leaving the curtains closed for long periods of time (such as when on vacation) can signal thieves that a home is unoccupied.

Mow the Lawn:

A freshly mowed lawn sends a message to burglars: someone is at home, keeping an eye on this property.

Plant Something Thorny:

Nobody likes to get poked, not even a hardened burglar, and a thorny rosebush underneath a window can be a powerful deterrent.

So there are six quick tips to make your home a less desirable target for a burglar. Do you have some additional tips? Please share them in the comment section below!

The bitterness of poor coverage lingers long after the sweet price is forgotten.

Joe Urvina is an insurance agent located in Gig Harbor, WA.

www.facebook.com/UrvinaInsurance
Joe@UrvinaInsurance.com
Twitter - @UrvinaInsurance
(253) 858-5881

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Jaydee1958 February 25, 2013 at 08:04 PM
Place a sign in your front yard: Home protected by Smith & Wesson three nights each week. You guess which three.
Jaydee1958 February 25, 2013 at 08:05 PM
Place a sign in your front yard. Tresspassers will be shot. Survivors shot again.
Jaydee1958 February 25, 2013 at 08:06 PM
Place a sign in your front yard. Can you out run a .357 projectile?
Joe Urvina February 25, 2013 at 08:20 PM
Ok, serious question @Jaydee1958. I support the right to bear arms and understand how a firearm can protect you while you are at home. However, if you advertise that you have a firearm at your home, do you increase the chance of a burglary while you are not home? Would a criminal break into your home while you are away looking for the firearm?
Jaydee1958 February 25, 2013 at 08:29 PM
I have an answer for that. But first I have a couple of questions for you: Say your a burglar you see any of these signs. You have to ask yourself several questions: 1. Is this sign for real? 2. If is real, is there anyone home? 3. If someone is home, do I really want to risk my life for anything they have? 4. Are there less risky homes in which to rob?
Joe Urvina February 25, 2013 at 08:32 PM
Great points. Thanks for the response.
phil February 26, 2013 at 07:24 AM
Contact the Gig Harbor Police Department and request a Home Security Survey. One of the services provided by the volunteer C.O.P.S. program.
Joe Urvina February 26, 2013 at 08:12 AM
Thank you for your comment Phil. I would like to learn more about that program. It sounds really great. Is there a website I can reference, or is phone call the best way to learn more?
Jaydee1958 February 26, 2013 at 02:45 PM
Remember: When seconds count; the police are just minutes away. Everyone I mean "EVERYONE" needs to learn how to protect themselves. Period
K February 26, 2013 at 08:43 PM
I'm very glad someone is writing an article on this topic. Burglaries are happening frequently in Gig Harbor and it doesn't seem to be making the headlines for some reason! I think the citizens need to be informed. We were recently burglarized. The tips I have after having been through the experience, are: 1. If you are home, answer the doorbell if it rings. Or at least let the person at the door know someone is home by making noise while you look through the peephole. They are ringing doorbells to make sure no one is home before they break in. 2. Install security cameras and signs/stickers that can be seen from the street to let thieves know they are not only being watched on your property, but also if they are casing the neighborhood driving down the road they will be seen by the cameras. 3. Talk to your neighbors!! Our neighbors were burglarized the day before we were and they didn't tell anyone. If we had known we would have been more vigilent in protecting our property. Form a neighborhood watch program and keep it active. Watch out for your neighbors homes as well. If you notice something suspicious, act on it. Write down a description of the car and license plate and call the police. 4. If you have a home security system, use it! I have talked to so many people after our experience who have inactive alarm systems in their homes. If it's old and inactive you can usually call an alarm company or an electrician who does security to see about getting it reactivated.
Akiko Oda February 26, 2013 at 09:04 PM
I'm sorry your home was burglarized, but thank you for the helpful tips.
Joe Urvina February 26, 2013 at 11:19 PM
Thanks for your comments. I think the comments about talking to your neighbors is very important. Great tips!
Gig Harbor Home Management February 27, 2013 at 12:41 AM
Light timers in the evening and leaving a TV on occasionally will help to provide the impression someone might be home. Joe, you are right that closed curtains are a telltale sign; having a friend open/close them more regularly might help. You can also try a trick of leaving a flat of flowers on the porch - a small bag of dirt and some gloves sitting there might demonstrate that the house won't be sitting empty for a week (they don't know you're out of town!) I might be a bit biased, but hiring a Home Watch Service to stop in and change things around is always a good idea. And it sure is great peace of mind to know that someone has committed to making your home a priority on their schedule, even when you're gone.
Joseph March 03, 2013 at 01:09 AM
We were ripped off on Wednesday. The thief broke in through our back door glass, set off our monitored alarm (with signs) , and was in long enough to steal jewelery. He was probably in and out of our house within a few minutes. This all happened in the middle of the day in broad daylight. The police took an hour to arrive since they were all busy working an accident. I think even if they could have gotten here quick the guy would have been long gone. We live near City Park so there is a lot of traffic going by. The door staff at Home Depot said people are coming in daily to replace broken doors, windows, etc. I agree that these crimes should be reported so people can have a heads up. I talked to all of our neighbors to warn them. We still love Gig Harbor but this has made us more leery of strangers in the area.

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