The Albuquerque Police Northeast Area Command has put out a list of eight tips on how to safeguard your home against burglary.
APD said to not be afraid to call if anyone ever feels there is a suspicious person lingering on their property, especially during times of big events, such as Balloon Fiesta, that bring in more people and when criminals tend to capitalize on auto theft the most.
“We would gladly respond to make sure your property is safe. Try to park in well-lit areas and, as always, be aware of your surroundings,” NE Commander Deanne Otzenberger said.
The first step listed is to access the area around the home and scout out any weaknesses around the exterior.
Entry gained by thieves can happen a number of ways. Thirty-four percent of burglaries happen at the front door of a home; first-floor windows account for 23%, and 22% come through the back door. The rest happen through the garage at 9%, 4% through the basement, 6% look for any unlocked opening, and a daring 2% will try for second-story windows, according to home security company ADT. Checking these areas around the home and making sure they’re secure at all times can greatly deter criminals.
The second tip from APD is to keep shrubbery around entrances and lining walkways trimmed to a minimum size. Letting plants get overgrown offers a haven for burglars to scope out the area and more opportunity to stay on a property longer without being spotted.
The third tip is build a fence, simply stated. However, building a fence can be costly and not always the right choice. Rio Grande Fencing Co. says that certain kinds of fencing, such as solid wood, actually attracts burglars.
“Solid wood fencing is great for attracting burglars because it provides them with the cover they need to rob your home unnoticed. Sort of like having thick foliage and little to no outdoor lighting. To keep your home safe, you’ve got to invest in a more protective fence,”the company website reads.
The site suggests to put thorny shrubs along a property instead if a fence is too costly.
Another tip is to deter thieves by simply stowing away expensive items such as grills, bikes or cars in the garage if possible. Additionally, they said, avoid putting outdoor decor in front of the home.
The fifth tip is to continuously and vigilantly secure all vehicles. Don’t leave any items in the car that might attract criminals. Cars are easy targets, and thieves are rarely caught for stealing from automobiles.
APD’s sixth tip says using curtains or blinds on smaller windows in the garage and basement can also deter criminals from trying to break into people’s homes.
The seventh is to install motion sensor lighting around the perimeter of the home to deter thieves at night and to also light pathways, especially at entrances.
The eighth and final tip is asking people to get out there and get to know their neighbors. It is more likely someone will tell you about crime issues in the area and if they see someone suspicious near or on your property. Having a unified neighborhood against burglars is the first to being vigilant not just at home, but throughout the areas people live in. APD also suggests maybe organizing a neighborhood watch program if needed.
They also suggest installing home security devices such a motion- or doorbell-activated cameras, which have helped people be notified of a break in and call it in much sooner.
To better learn how to secure areas of the home, familyhandyman.com delves further with 23 ways to make a safer home from installing a peephole to being more careful on social media, such as posting when you’re going out of town.