Follow these easy steps to make your home less appealing to criminals:
- Make sure you have sturdy metal or solid wood doors at all entries into your home, and that sliding glass and similar doors are properly secured.
- Install and use well-made deadbolt locks (1.5-inch throw or greater) on all exterior doors.
- Make sure all exterior doors have wide-angle viewers that can be used by everyone in the house. Install two viewers at different heights if necessary.
- Light up entry doors so that you can tell who’s there. Motion detector lights, flood lights, or similar lighting can help brighten up the property.
- Trim the shrubbery around your doors and windows so crooks don’t have a place to hide.
- Instead of hiding keys around the outside of your house, give a key to a neighbor that you trust.
- Consider an alarm. They can be a good investment, especially if you have valuables in your home.
- During the day, leave drapes and shades in a normal position; the way you have them when at home. Don’t leave easily movable valuables in sight close to windows.
- At night, leave on some inside lights – bathrooms and hallways, for example.
- Consider buying automatic timers that turn lamps on after dark, then off a few hours later or at dawn.
- Never leave garage doors open – especially with no car in sight. This is a WELCOME sign to burglars.
- Install deadbolt locks. Make sure locks are firmly screwed in solid wood – not just into a light door jamb. The longer the screws and the longer the lock bolt, the safer your home will be.
- Burglars often try to find out if anyone is home by phoning. Warn family members, especially children, not to give out information over the phone.
- Avoid putting your name on mailboxes or on doors.
- Don’t open your door to anyone you don’t know and trust.
- Never keep large sums of cash around the house. Keep valuable jewelry that you don’t often wear in a safe deposit box.
- Don’t advertise your vacation plans. Let a trusted neighbor know you’re going on vacation and ask them to keep an eye on your house and pick up any mail or newspapers left at your doorstep.
- If you’ll be away from your home for an extended time, call the City of District Heights Police Department (301) 336-1400.
- Keep an eye on your neighbors’ homes and ask them to do the same for you.