You might not know this, but the holiday season is not just a joyous time for getting together with families and friends. It is also a great time for thieves to go “shopping” in homes. Burglars know that most people are either away from their home buying gifts or on vacation.
According to the FBI, more than 350,000 homes in the U.S. are robbed between November and December every year. Whether you are planning on staying in town or going to Grandma’s house, you need to be extra cautious. To keep you, your family, and your possessions safe, we have compiled a few tips to help you stay secure, while spending precious and fun days during the holiday season.
If you have been thinking about buying a home alarm system, this might be the time to do so. Protect America security systems, for example, are reasonably-priced and can be controlled from anywhere on your phone or tablet. A great advantage of having an alarm system today is that it does more than just protect your home for holiday season burglaries. Protect America has security systems that come with panic buttons, disaster sensors, and carbon monoxide detectors.
If you might think it is cool to tell everyone on your Facebook page that you will be out of town for the holidays, think again. Criminals have access to social media too, and let them know that your home is vacant is like giving them an open invitation.
And since we are on the subject, posting a picture of your new Christmas “bling” on Instagram isn’t smart either. Nobody, except those close to you, needs to know about your expensive jewelry. This also includes sitting all the presents in your big living room window for the whole neighborhood to see. We hate to say this, but when you do any of these things, you are just asking for trouble.
When you plan on leaving town for the holidays, your home should still look occupied. This means that before you leave, you should make arrangements to have your mail either picked up by a neighbor or held at your local post office. The same goes for your newspaper delivery. A light timer is a vital tool to have your lights come on automatically, inside and outside.
A great suggestion: unplug your automatic garage door opener. Even with a universal remote (the new tool for burglars), your garage door can’t be raised, giving thieves access to your home. Additionally, ask your neighbors to park in your driveway while you are away.
We know this sounds simple enough, but you would be surprise at how many people leave windows and doors unlocked during the holidays. You need to make sure your doors and windows are locked, even if you are just going to the grocery store.
Also, you need to make sure the locks are durable and sturdy. If you are planning on having exterior Christmas lights, don’t run the cord from inside your home to the outside. A little opening is more than enough room for a criminal to pry your window open and climb in.
These safety tips are geared to assist you in not falling victim to a home burglary during the holidays. We know that having a great time is your point, but with home invasions on the rise, so is being safe.