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Home Security: 7 Burglary Myths Debunked

March 8, 2016

There are so many conflicting home safety and security precautions and tips out there that it’s hard to figure out which to adhere to in order to ensure your home, property and valuables are safe.  With petty theft and break ins specifically, following the wrong advice can leave you and your home vulnerable to thieves and other criminals, so we’ve put together this home security article to help you have better peace of mind.  Here’s a list of 7 common burglary myths – debunked.

 

Home Security Myth 1:  Windows are the most popular point of entry for burglars.

 

Surprisingly, research tells us that the a lot of criminals would choose to use doors over windows to gain access to homes.  Couple this with the fact so many burglaries are said to happen while people are actually at home, even if you’re in a gated community, leaving your doors unlocked when home is a big home safety and security risk.  Make sure your windows are barred, but also ensure your security gate is locked and secure at all times.

 

Home Security Myth 2:  Big dogs deter Burglars

 

What deters would-be criminals is not the size of your dog, but the size of the bark.  The dog’s bark, how much it barks and the pitch, is what alerts criminals to the presence of a dog which is a big security threat deterrent.  Smaller dogs are actually much better barkers than larger dogs and therefore possibly better at alerting you to an intruder so that you can act accordingly…Such as call for help, push the panic button or run to your safe room.

 

Home Security Myth 3:  Burglars can’t find your hidden valuables

 

Burglars are masters at what they do and chances are that secret hiding place you put your documents and valuables into, isn’t so secret after all.  This is because most people hide their stuff in the same places.  The best thing to do is to think of the most unusual place, like your freezer or the pantry and spread your valuables around these different areas.  Alternatively a secure safe, which cannot be removed will ensure your valuables are safe in the event of a burglary.

 

Home Security Myth 4:  Burglars need time to break in

 

Thieves go for opportunity and quickly scope out their area for easy targets.  Homes that are poorly secured, empty or have no security companies, and take their gap quickly.  They know that it can take security companies a few minutes to arrive and more than 20 minutes for the police to arrive, so even if someone does see them and alert the authorities, they have time to get what they came for a leave.  A professional criminal doesn’t need 20 minutes, research says they can be in and out in minutes.  So whether you’re popping into the shop or going for a walk – lock those doors!

 

Home Security Myth 5:  Your home is most vulnerable to burglars at night

 

It’s natural for us to feel our homes are more vulnerable at night when we’re out as a lot of break-ins do occur in the dark and this gives burglars added camouflage from being seen.  However, with so many people leaving their homes unattended from morning to night when the family is at work or school, daylight break ins are becoming easier to pull off and more and more prominent.  Get to know your neighbourhood and neighbours!

 

Home Security Myth 6:  No Mail is better than some mail.

 

We learnt from our Holiday Home Security Checklist article, that letting the mail and flyers pile up, alerts criminals that you’re away.  However, not having anything delivered at all, could also be a sign to someone who’s watching your home that you’ve gone away.  The best thing would be to get a friend or a neighbour to collect mail while you’re on vacation to give the impression you’re still at the property.

 

Home Security Myth 7:  Having an alarm is enough of a deterrent for burglars

 

A lot of us tend to put alarm decals on our property to show which security system and company we are using.  For those pro burglars, that’s just the info they need to research the company and find ways around it.  Instead, keep them guessing, put generic signage up or varied signage to help keep your home and your valuables secure.

 

Knowing security myths can ensure you don’t have a false sense of security and make your home much safer from break ins.  If you’re looking for more security and safety tips, check out our Tips to Improve your home security, 12 Home-Alone Safety Tips for Women articles. Have burglary security tips of your own?  We’d love to hear from you in the comments below or contact us via email at steve@locklatch.co.za or call Steve on +27 82 447 2809.

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