While movies like “Home Alone” may have taken the Mickey out of holiday season–related burglaries, the truth is, break-ins are never that humorous in real life. What is true however is that there are a number of vulnerabilities created around a household during the holiday season, and robberies are one of the most prevalent. The FBI reports around 400,000 burglaries occur during the holidays each year. Of that figure, the vast majority are single-family homes. What’s more is that amateur criminals perform nearly 70 percent of such burglaries, which points to the likelihood that these crimes can be deterred. While Macaulay Culkin spent hours crafting booby traps to deter burglars, there are other precautions homeowners should take. Here are a few tips to prevent burglaries in your home this holiday season.
We’ve also included the NewHomeSource holiday playlist at the end of the article, so you can enjoy all the fun holiday vibes!
Lock It Up
Regardless of how long you plan to leave your house — an hour shopping trip or a two-week vacation — it’s best to lock all doors and windows. With the vast majority of burglars falling under amateur status, many robbers are looking for quick and easy entry. If you lock every possible entry point to your home, most burglars will quickly move on to the next house that may not have taken such precautions. And though this is pretty much a given, be sure to lock all entry points at night even when you’re at home. After all, this is when burglars strike most often.
Don’t Tell Everyone
When traveling, limit the number of people you tell, especially in public places and on social media. Doing so reduces the chance that a stranger will overhear and subsequently get any malicious ideas. This is especially important on social media, such as Twitter and Facebook. When you post something indicating your home will be vacant, you’re essentially broadcasting to every stranger in the world that you’ll be going out of town.
Install Security Lighting
Installing motion sensor lighting on your property is a simple way to give the impression you’re home even when you’re not. If a trespasser on your property gets hit with a security light, there’s a high likelihood he’ll run away.
Secure Gifts Inside the Home
If you have a garage or side unit on your property, don’t hide your holiday gifts in these areas. This will be the first place a burglar looks, primarily because it’s the easiest.
Have Someone House-Sit
When in doubt, ask a trusted friend or relative to stay at your home while you’re away. While you may not relish the idea of having to host someone while you’re away, having someone stay at your home and keep an eye on it can more than a peace of mind — which is in and of itself worth it in the long run — it can prevent a burglar from thinking you’re actually away.