Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Protecting Your Lexington Home

Are you already thinking about where you are going to take your summer vacation? There are simple steps you can take to make your home less enticing to would-be burglars and reduce your risk of being burglarized while you are away.

1. Pretend someone is always home
Typically if burglars think someone is home, they won’t attempt to break in. When you leave the house, create an illusion that someone’s still there by leaving a light on, or even the television. You can also set timers to set lights to go on and off throughout the home at different times.

2. Secondary Entrances
Locks can easily be picked on sliding doors so take extra precaution to secure them. Place a strong dowel, steel bar or two-by-four and slide it into the back groove of the sliding door to prevent the door from being opened even if the lock is picked.
Forty percent of break-ins happen without the use of force. Lock all the windows and doors and use the dead bolt on the door if you have one. Don’t forget to lock the door leading from the garage to the inside of the home. Even if your garage door is down, someone can easily open it. If you have a door to your garage with a window, consider covering the window so people can’t peer in.

3. Don’t provide easy access
Never leave a spare key hidden outside of your home that’s an open invitation for a burglar. Instead, give a spare key to a neighbor or hide a combination lockbox to keep a key in.

4. Curb Appeal
Don’t provide a hiding place for criminals. Keep shrubs and bushes in front of windows low and cut away any tall tree branches that reach upper story windows. Don’t leave anything out that would allow robbers to access higher windows.

5. Don’t advertise you are away
If you’re leaving town for a while, let the police know and request that they drive by your property to check on things. Break-ins spike during July and August when homeowners are usually away on vacation. Tell a trusted neighbor when you will be away and ask them to keep an eye on your property. Have a house sitter pick up mail, shovel the driveway or mow the lawn. These are all telltale signs of an empty home.

6. Mums the Word
DON’T POST IT ON SOCIAL MEDIA or tell casual acquaintances of your plans. Recently there was a rash of break-ins because one of the burglars worked for the newspaper and had a list of people that put their papers on hold while they were away. Better to just have the neighbor pick them up for you.
Hope these simply but useful tips will keep your Lexington home safe while you are away.

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