Getting burglarized is one of the biggest fears of preppers. They’ve got their family, property and valuables to worry about. Then the questions loom: Will it happen again? How can I be safer? Here are nine things burglars only share among themselves.
1. Burglars Case Out Homeowners on Social Media
Image via Flickr Eastlaketimes
You know all those posts on Facebook and Google+ where you inform your circle of friends about your upcoming family vacation? You can easily let burglars in your circle of friends by accepting requests, adding numerous people to your circles without checking them out and yes, even accepting social media requests of your friend’s acquaintances. It’s important to carefully consider who you let into your personal life on social media. It’s easy to forget about a random person you added 6 months ago, but they may very well be keeping a watchful eye on the things you post. So on Christmas morning when you share a picture of the beautiful diamond bracelet you bought your wife, they know it’s time to strike.
These people are always looking for opportunities and broadcasting your vacation plans can put your valuables at risk. While it’s great to post vacation photos once you’re home, avoid telling the world when you’ll be out of town as this can leave your home extremely vulnerable. Be sure to make your social media accounts very private and only accept friend requests from trusted individuals. You likely won’t ever see a “like” from a random person who added you.
2. Robbers Pay Attention to Warning Signs
Many neighborhoods are joining together to fight crime with Neighborhood Watch signs. Do employ this in your neighborhood and you can always get additional signs—and more are better—from your local police station. Not only do these signs deter thieves, they also make neighbors more conscious of what’s going on around their block. It’s a good idea to make friends with these neighbors as they can help keep an eye on your home when you aren’t there.
Beware of dog signs also deter the bad guys. Whether or not you have a dog, these signs can act reduce a thieves likeliness of considering your home a target.
3. They Hate Big (And Small) Dogs
Image via Flickr AJBatac
A sign is great, but nothing compares to a big guard dog. It’s unlikely that a would be robber will follow through with his plans when he comes face to face with a 100 lb Rottweiler hell bent on protecting the family and homestead. Even small dogs can keep a robber out of your home as the noise alone will deter a thief. Small dogs are typically great watch dogs and will be sure to notify you or the neighborhood if something isn’t right.
Breeds that are ideal for protecting one’s home include the previously mentioned Rottweiler, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd and Bull Mastiff. These dogs must be properly cared for and handled to ensure they understand their role in the “pack”. These dogs will become a part of your family and fiercely defend your home, children, wife and valuables.
4. They Hate Home Alarm Systems
Robbers fear alarm systems because they want to get in and out quickly. Contrary to popular belief a home alarm system is not only affordable, you may even qualify for a discount on your homeowner’s insurance premium once the system is installed. In addition, signs on posts and window decals come with home alarm systems so you can easily inform burglars quickly they’ll need to get past your security system first. Learn more about security systems from this site and do ask about affordable plans and monitoring protection.
While you might end up with a broken window or door, an ear piercing alarm system could mean the difference between $100 in damage or thousands in stolen property. You also have the option of having a self-monitored system so you don’t have to deal with the police snooping around your property. These systems will send you alerts via text message, email , etc. You can even watch live streams of your home from the comfort of wherever you are depending on the service.
5. They Can Find Ways to Get Into Your House
You know that friendly handyman you hired to take care of all those little things you need done around the house? Did you know he or she or their associates are eager for you to give them keys to your home? Even the most honest may have unsavory friends who know the business they are in and will steal keys to burglarize your home. Be careful who you give keys to and it’s best to not give any keys or security codes out—ever.
More creative criminals don’t need your keys. They’ll simply ask to use the restroom, leaving a window unlocked to return at a later time. Always make sure to check your locks and windows after you have any service personnel in your home. It’s an unfortunate reality, but even the friendliest individuals can have cruel intentions.
6. Burglars Are Tempted by Your Garage and Yard
Even if the police or a private security service patrols your “safe” neighborhood on a routine basis, if you consistently leave your garage door open or bikes, sporting equipment, tools, lawn mower or your beloved vehicle in your driveway, burglars will notice. It’s easy to steal these loose things lying around and even if they don’t have enough time to steal your vehicle, they will scratch it up if they can. Keep your garage door closed with your valuables inside unless you’re outside.
Your beautifully manicured lawn can tell a robber you’ve got taste—and possibly riches to match. This isn’t to say you should change your yard, but being aware is key.
7. Burglars Are Willing To Wait For A Big Payoff
Burglars aren’t necessarily looking to make a quick $100. Some will wait days, even weeks to make their move after carefully studying their victim’s habits, schedules and homes. Your cars can tell a burglar all they need to know as they can keep tabs on when it is and isn’t there, giving them useful insight into when to strike.
Going on vacation can cause serious trouble is you aren’t careful. Piled up newspapers and overflowing mailboxes tell a burglar that you aren’t around. It’s a good idea to have a neighbor you trust collect your mail and newspapers. If you live in a snowy climate, burglars will look out for homes with untouched snowdrifts and a lack of plow lines or footprints. In this situation, ask your neighbor to help by creating footprints in the snow. This will make it look like there is activity there.
Don’t underestimate the patience of a criminal especially if you’ve got lots of valuables in your home.
8. Burglars Love Guns
While many view guns as a deterrent, criminals see dollar signs. Thieves are thrilled when they come across a home with a large stockpile of guns and ammo because they can make a killing by simply scratching off any identifiable information. Be aware, guns are one of the most valuable items on the street and can be easily to sold gang members, drug dealers rather quickly. Guns on the streets can sometimes go for far more than at the local gun shop as felons, convicts and criminals are willing to pay a premium to get their hands on one, or more. Obviously it’s important to keep your gun collection in a locked gun closet, but take it a step further by ensuring the closet is out of site and not easily viewable from any windows or doors.
9. They’re Getting Wise To Preppers And Survivalists
Image via Flickr digitalmoneyworld
While it’s true preppers and survivalists are likely to employ many of the deterrent tactics on this list that doesn’t mean they aren’t considerable targets for thieves. Burglars know that preppers are prepared for a number of scenarios including a disruption in the food or energy supply, rioting and widespread financial collapse. That means they know about your food supply, your guns and worse, your precious metals. The prospect of a huge payoff in precious metals like silver, gold or platinum means ballsier criminals are actively seeking prepper homes.
If you are a part of any forums or prepper groups, be sure to keep your location and any identifiable information a secret. Try to be discreet about your stockpiles, especially of high value precious metals. You never know if your fellow prepper is a good intentioned individual or a professional thief looking to raid your entire savings.
Before the SHTF, you’ve got to defend yourself against home burglars. This list is sure to help you make your home less of a target. Never assume your neighborhood is safe.
Are there any other things about burglars we didn’t list? Let us know below.
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