- If you have a security system, put the signs to good use. Whether or not you actually have a system installed, potential burglars may see that as a sign that your house is one to avoid. It’s an effective defense for most, but for some burglars, it could mean that you also have something worth stealing.
- Motion triggered lights. These are not only good to keep people feeling safe at night when they arrive to your home, but it can also spook people that are there for the wrong reasons. They’re normally very affordable and can easily make your house look more like someone’s there when you’re away.
- Know what to avoid when you know you won’t be at home. If you’re expecting a package to be delivered, you may want to rethink your delivery man just leaving it on the stoop. That’s a surefire way to let people know you’re not home, and that also is something else for someone to steal. Keep windows on the second floor locked, even if you think someone can’t get in. The second floor gives the illusion of security, but it can also mean someone can sneak in if there are easily climbable trees in your yard. Don’t leave valuables in plain sight of windows and doors.
- Know what your home location’s advantages and disadvantages are. Walkable neighborhoods with lots of sidewalks and people present mean there could be more of a chance for witnesses to a crime. Houses on corners offer more ways to come and go, and easier ways to get out. Houses in the middle of the street offer less ways to get in and out.
- Dowel rods in the windows are always a good idea. Even if you do keep your windows locked, dowel rods in the tracks of your window make you a less likely target, since your window can’t be opened and the screen taken out as easily. Go to your local hardware store and have dowel rods trimmed accordingly to the lengths of your windows.
- Get to know your neighbors. Being friendly to your neighbors does more than make your neighborhood more pleasant. It makes it safer too. By knowing your neighbors and staying in touch, you can keep an eye on each other’s houses when one of you is away, you can take in the mail, turn on lights, and call the police if you suspect something is wrong.
In addition to these tips, consider joining a neighborhood block watch or attending a community organizing meeting. Many local police departments like the Kent Police Department offer them, along with safety tips to help keep you, your home and your neighborhood safe.