IMPORTANT TIPS TO PROTECT YOUR HOME AGAINST BURGLARY
The nightmare of every homeowner: coming home from your holiday to discover that there has been a burglary. You cannot stop it from happening, but you can take the necessary steps to reduce the risk of burglary. Z-Yachting & Golf-Estates give you the most important tips:
PUT BURGLARS IN THE SPOTLIGHT
One of the most effective means to counteract burglary is lighting. Thieves like to work in the dark and often walk away if your home is well lit. Work with time switches and consider outside lighting. This way, the lamps can be used with a twilight switch that automatically switches on when it is dark. You can also provide lamps with a motion detector. Make sure that the lights are placed in a place that is difficult to reach, so they cannot be destroyed quickly.
DO NOT MAKE YOUR HOUSE A DISPLAY
Make sure there are no valuable items in sight. An expensive laptop on the living room table, or an iPad in the window sill is asking for difficulties. Make it as unattractive as possible. Store small valuables in a vault that is well anchored.
ELECTRONIC DEVICES WITH DETECTION
Provide your electronic devices with GPS software that allows you to track the location. For example, on your iPad, iPhone and Mac, use the ‘Find my iPhone’ app.
DO NOT PLACE YOUR HOME ADDRESS IN YOUR NAVIGATION SOFTWARE
If you go on holiday by car, do not enter your home address as „home”. If your GPS or even your car would get stolen, it would be immediately clear that you’re not home and it would provide them your home address.
DO NOT PUT KEYS UNDERNEATH THE DOORMAT OR IN THE FLOWERPOT
Do not hide any keys underneath the doormat, flowerpot or other places. Now that we are talking about keys: Has you neighbour given you a key of his house, do not label it. Also ask your neighbour not to label your key. Otherwise you give burglars a free pass.
MAKE IT DIFFICULT
Many burglars try to enter homes through the first floor. Make sure there is no equipment available, which allows burglars to easily reach the first floor. Think of dirt containers, benches, ladders and stairs. Store them or fasten them well. If you have any outdoor sockets, make sure power is switched off.
Do you have bikes in your garden or shed? Lock them well and put the keys in a safe place.
LEAVING YOUR CAR AT HOME
You are going on a car-free holiday? Ask the neighbour to move the car regularly. In any case, put your car key in a safe place that is not easy accessible.
ASK YOUR NEIGHBOUR
Let reliable people know you’re on vacation and ask if they want to keep an eye. Also, make sure they can reach you in case of emergencies.
MAKE SURE YOUR LUGGAGE IS ANONYMOUS
Do not add an address label on the outside of your suitcase! If you want to quickly recognize your suitcase, then place a special sticker on your suitcase or a colored string around the handle.
TAKE YOUR TIME TO LEAVE
Usually the departure for holidays is a busy activity. Force yourself to take your time! Make a checklist and take the time to complete that checklist, so you don’t get any stress on vacation. Nothing is more annoying then to sit on the plane and to keep wondering whether you have properly closed the backdoor of your house. Always perform a visual check before leaving. Walk through and around the house and see if all windows and doors are closed. Also, do not forget to close your shed and the gate if you have one. Also lock doors securely and remove keys from locks on the inside. Do not leave them in sight.
LEAVE THE IMPRESSION THAT SOMEONE IS HOME
For years there has been rumor that burglars put a stick against the door (or an elastic around the door knob). If these remain there after a few days, then it is clear that the residents are not home. Therefor, ask a reliable person (friends, family, neighbour, etc.) to take a look at your home regularly. Have this person remove the post at the front door. Make sure the stack of newspapers and letters are not visible. If your living room is visible from the road, ask if that person changes something from time to time. Move cups, put a newspaper on the table, close the curtains, etc. This gives the impression that someone is regularly home. Also, leave some toys in the garden.
Very pleasant of course to keep your friends and family informed of everything you’re experiencing on your holiday through social media. Photos and videos on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram: very handy for burglars. If you place a status update of your beautiful view, it is immediately clear that you are on vacation. Do not post these updates until you return home.
DO NOT USE AN EMAIL ABSENCE NOTICE
Preferably do not set an email absence message and do not leave a voicemail message. Do not say you’re on holiday, or keep it vague.
WATCH OUT FOR THE DOG
Dogs often notice it as soon as someone moves around your house and then start to bark. Dogs are therefore not the favorite animals of burglars. Some people therefore put a sign at their fence: beware of the dog. Even though they do not have a dog! There are also electrical devices available that respond to movement and then make the sound of a barking dog.
PLACE A CAMERA
More and more people place cameras in and around their homes. This will be a deterrence, but it can also be proof if you are the victim of an intrusion or attempted burglary. Get good advise and make sure you use a camera that makes good recordings, also at night. You can also consider a so-called IP camera to connect to your smartphone so you receive the notification immediately when motion is detected. You can also check the camera regularly through an app to see what’s going on.
JOIN WHATSAPP GROUP
In many neighbourhoods, WhatsApp groups are available where residents keep each other informed of suspicious situations. And not without reason, because in neighbourhoods with an active WhatsApp group there are fewer burglars! Find out if your neighbourhood already has a WhatsApp group and join. No group yet? Consider starting one.
INSTALL AN ALARM
An alarm is a proven way of keeping burglars away, on one hand to prevent a burglary, and on the other hand in the event of an actual burglary. Today there are many wireless systems for sale, which means that you do not need to install new wires. Some systems can also connect you directly to a special alarm central who will take action if your alarm goes off.