As many of us are working steadily on whittling down our shopping lists, we should also keep a watchful eye out during the busy shopping season. What may seem like easy, common sense actions could stave off a break-in.
The holiday shopping season provides a prime venue for burglars making homes extremely
vulnerable to break-ins.
Not only is this a busy shopping season, it's also a time when a number of us will travel. Before leaving town for the holidays (or any holiday or vacation), make sure a trusted neighbor or friend will be able to check on your property. Secure doors and windows at all times and make sure alarm systems are set.
Another valuable suggestion is to make the home appear “lived-in” or occupied while you are away. Leave a light on and make sure newspapers and mail doesn't pile up while no one is home. It is also good to warn family members to be cautious about giving out information over the telephone. Burglars sometimes call ahead to learn if anyone is home, who is home or when residents are expected to return.
Don't leave unopened gifts and packages in view from windows or doors and don't leave boxes for new electronics and other items out by the driveway for extended periods, instead take them out on garbage pickup days.
Never leave keys under doormats, flowerpots, mailboxes or other “secret” hiding places - burglars know where to look for hidden keys.
Most importantly, if you see suspicious activity in your neighborhood, report it, and keep a watchful eye on neighborhood activity and report any suspicious activity. The risk of being burglarized can be greatly reduced during the holiday season by taking a few simple steps to make your home more difficult to enter and less enticing to would-be burglars.