Here are some simple things you can do to keep your family safe and better protect your home:

Get into the habit of locking your doors and windows

It sounds simple, but a number of break-ins are due to unforced entry into the home, via an unlocked door or window. Install window locks to prevent burglars from simply opening the latch or sliding a window open.Take time to inspect every room in your house and identify weak spots of entry.

Educate the family on home security

Decrease the vulnerability of having your home burgled, even when you’re at home. Teach your children to lock their bedroom windows at dusk, and keep downstairs or back doors locked – when not in use.

Here are some other no-cost suggestions:

  • Keep your car and garage locked at all times.
  • Keep your spare keys in a safe place. Burglars know all the usual places – so don’t make it easy for them.
  • Don’t leave spare keys outside. Again, burglars know all the hiding spots – under the front door mat, on a window ledge, beneath a plant pot or in the letterbox or meter box. Instead, consider leaving keys with a neighbour or friend.
  • Record the serial numbers of your possessions and keep the record in a safe place and also consider keeping valuables in a safe or at the bank. Take digital photos of valuable items.
  • Lock your side gates – as these allow burglars easy access to the back of your house, away and out of sight.
  • Lock your garden shed to remove access to ladders and easy-to-steal tools that burglars might use to break in.

Make sure your children understand the basics of how to work your security system.  If your children let themselves in through a garage door after school, teach them the importance of closing and locking the garage and door connected to the home after entering.

Don’t be left in the dark

Stop burglars at the front gate by designing the exterior of your home to act as a deterrant. Keep doors and main entrances well lit to deter criminal activity and make sure there are no dark zones around your home where criminals can hide. Install movement-activated sensor lights or consider installing alarms and cameras.

Keep trees and shrubs trimmed, especially those close to windows and doors that could provide cover for intruders. Select fence designs that do not obscure visibility from the roadside.