How Burglars See Your Home

What makes a home an attractive target for burglars? What can you do to protect yourself? Here are five easy tips to “think like a burglar” and keep your home safe.


Keep a low profile.
Is your flat-screen TV visible through a window from the street? Do you have an expensive car parked in your driveway? To a burglar, those are signs that your home might offer a lucrative haul. Keep expensive items concealed, and don’t advertise large purchases by leaving boxes at the curb.

Maintain visibility.
Tall shrubs and privacy fences provide burglars with cover so your neighbors won’t see them breaking in. Keep windows and doors visible to deter burglars. Install motion-activated floodlights around your home to draw attention if someone approaches after dark.

Lock upstairs windows, and don’t keep ladders outside.
People often forget to lock upstairs windows—and burglars know it. Make sure all your windows are locked when you’re not home, and keep your ladders in a locked garage or shed so a burglar can’t use them to access upstairs windows.

Make it look like you’re home.
Unoccupied houses are prime targets. Use timers on lights, televisions and radios to create the appearance of activity. Hire landscapers if you’ll be out of town for an extended period so your home looks well cared for. If a burglar thinks someone is home, they’re more likely to skip your house.

Secure doors and windows.
Burglars look for weak doors with old hardware that are easy to kick in. If your doors aren’t secure, replace the knobs, locks and hardware. Use long screws that help resist kick-ins, and consider adding dead bolt. If you have a doggie door, secure it with a lock or just seal it up.