Sometimes the smallest detail can make all the difference between a burglar getting into your home or not. Seemingly minuscule changes around the outside of your home can also affect whether or not a burglar even wants to try getting inside.
Not convinced? Here are little updates you can make to your home that will make a big difference in safety. They’re easy to put in place and cost close to nothing, so you really don’t have any reason not to try them.
1. Replace broken blinds.
One lost panel on your blinds is all a burglar needs to look into your home. Even though a broken panel doesn’t affect you much in terms of sleep or shade, it provides a burglar plenty of opportunity to peek inside your private living space. Don’t wait to replace a panel if it falls off.
2. Find shades that show light.
Consider installing shades on your windows that are slightly translucent, so people looking at your house can tell that lights and lamps are on. These shades still make it impossible for burglars to look inside your home, but they do let onlookers see that lights are on in the house and help give the impression that your home is occupied. Shades that are too thick can make a house look vacant from the outside, which can welcome attack.
3. Add a peephole, and keep it clean.
If you don’t already have a peephole in your front door, add one. You should have a way to see who is at the door without having to open it. You could even cut out a small panel in your door that you can open like a latch and speak to visitors through. This way, you can tell people to leave brochures and boxes on the porch without having to open the door.
If you already have a peephole, make sure it’s clean. A peephole doesn’t do you any good if you can’t see through it.
4. Have a silent answering machine.
It’s time to do away with loud answering machines that let anyone standing outside your home know the machine picked up a call. The moment a burglar hears, “Hi. You’ve reached the Thompsons. Sorry we’re not home right now…” they know you aren’t home. Send calls to an answering service, rather than a loud answering machine. You could also set up your phone to send calls directly to the answering service when you aren’t home so nobody standing outside your home can hear that the phone rang and nobody picked up.
5. Fill the gap under the doors.
With a few good tools, burglars can use the gap under your door to open the door from the inside. These gaps also let out cold air during the summer from the AC and hot air during the winter from the heater, so they are huge energy-wasters. Seal them up.
6. Install a door brace.
A door brace can resist over 100 pounds of weight. Even if a burglar manages to manipulate the lock on your front door, they’ll struggle to push it open if you’ve installed a door brace. It’s a simple way to reinforce one of the most common points of entry for burglars.
7. Reinforce skylights.
Skylights provide a pretty way to let natural light into your home, but they are also security weak points. If you have a skylight, make sure it’s made with shatter-resistant glass. Also consider using foggy or glazed glass so that a burglar cannot look through it and into your home.
8. Cover up windowpanes in doors.
If you have decorative windowpanes in your front door, they may be attractive, but they also provide an easy way for a burglar to get into your home. All a burglar has to do is break one, reach through and open your front door from the inside. Reinforce these with break-resistant glass or cover them entirely with wood.
9. Purchase a fire ladder.
If you have a multi-story home, you should keep a fire ladder on each of the top floors. In case of a fire, it may not be safe for people upstairs to go downstairs. Furthermore, if there are violent intruders on the bottom level of your home, people can escape through the top levels using the fire ladders.
These small changes and updates can be the reason a burglar fails to break into your home, or takes your home off their target list entirely. Don’t wait – these fixes are simple and could make all the difference.