With the end of the school year comes vacation time. As our thoughts turn to taking some time off, we need to make sure that our homes will be safe while we are away. Did you know that most intruders will spend no more than 60 seconds trying to break into a home? If it takes longer there is a greater likelihood they will be caught so instead, they move on to a house that will be easier. Help your clients take preventative measures now to lessen their chance of experiencing a break in.
Keep Your House Safe
- Consider installing a security system. Include all exterior doors and windows that are low enough for an intruder to access.
- Give an extra key to a friend or neighbor. Never leave a key under a flower pot or door mat. You can also purchase a contractors lock box and place a key inside for emergencies.
- Secure a sliding glass door by putting a broomstick or dowel in the inside track. This will jam the door should an intruder try to open it. You can also purchase special locks for sliding glass doors. These often times require you drilling a small hole through the sliding glass door frame where you can insert a pin to prevent the door from being lifted off the track.
- Lock double-hung windows. You can also install a "pin" in these windows as well. Also, secure your basement windows with grilles or grates. If you go this route make sure they can be opened from the inside in case of fire.
- Make sure all of your exterior doors are either metal or solid wood. You don't want a door which an intruder could kick in easily.
- Install outside lights and keep them on at night. Motion detector lights are very effective.
- Prune your shrubbery so it doesn't hide windows or doors. Also cut back tree limbs that an intruder could use to climb to an upper level window or door.
- Put your lights on a timer to give the illusion that someone is home. Lights that are on 24 hours are a good indicator that no one is home.
- Leave your blinds and draperies in their normal position.
- Have the post office hold your mail while you are away. If you have a newspaper deliver, place that service on hold as well. Nothing says "vacation" like 8 newspapers in the driveway.
- Don't post on social media sites that you are on vacation and don't post pictures of you on vacation. Wait until you return and let your friends know what a great time you had.
Intruders are Patient
Criminals can be extremely patient and creative. It is not uncommon for them to "watch" your house before making a move. Pay attention to vehicles that are parked on your street for extended periods of time and talk to your neighbors to see if they have heard of any unusual activity in the neighborhood. Elderly neighbors often see everything that goes on, so be sure to ask them.
Keep Your Guard Up
We all tend to let our guard down a bit more in the Summer months, but we need to take precautions to ensure we are safe and our homes are safe. Be well.
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