Keeping Crooks Out: The Basics Matter Most

Small security measures are a huge deterrent. Most home break-ins aren’t the work of criminal masterminds; burglars just want to steal stuff with minimal time, effort and risk.

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Small security measures are a huge deterrent. Most home break-ins aren’t the work of criminal masterminds; burglars just want to steal stuff with minimal time, effort and risk. Unfortunately, there are lots of easy targets in any neighborhood. But that’s good news for you. If you make your home just a little harder to get into, you greatly increase the odds that crooks will bypass your house and look for an easier job.

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Focus on windows and doors

All the usual security advice (install exterior lighting, ask the neighbors to watch your house, etc.) is worth following. But above all, know this: Most break-ins occur through ground-level windows and doors. So strengthening them is priority one. For help with that, search for “home security” at familyhandyman.com.

Daytime is crime time

Most of us think of burglary as a nocturnal activity. That used to be true. But these days, most burglaries occur between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. In many cases, the crooks get in through unlocked doors or windows.

What about window bars?

Window bars are almost impossible to get past, making them the toughest type of window security. But before you install the bars, ask the local police if they’re necessary. In many areas, crooks avoid breaking glass. It makes a racket and is dangerous to the thief. As one cop put it, “When we find broken glass, we usually find drops of burglar blood.”

Plus, check out these 13 Inexpensive Ways to Theft-Proof Your Home.