The holiday decorations are up and most people are in a cheerful holiday spirit, but that doesn’t mean you can let home security slip your mind or household. Thieves know that the busy holiday season offers advantages – whether extra presents under the tree or distracted homeowners. It’s important to stay alert and aware to keep you, your family and your home safe and secure during the holiday season.
The FBI reports that nearly 400,000 burglaries occur between November and December each year in the United States, but prevention is easy. The National Crime Prevention Council, MoneyPit and Security-Port offer great easy and commonsense recommendations to keep you and yours safe during the holiday season.
Dos and Don’ts for a Secure Holiday Home:
- Don’t hide spare keys under flowerpots, doormats or on door-frame ledges. Do give a spare key to a trusted neighbor.
- Do use a timer to turn household lights on and off even if you’re not home. Burglars watch for occupancy cues.
- Don’t display your Christmas tree and presents in front of easy-access windows. Burglars love easy in-and-out routes.
- Do keep your windows and doors, including sliding doors, locked and secure.
- Don’t display your family name on your mailbox – burglars can easily find out your phone number and call to see if you are home.
- Do make sure you’re home to accept any packages that are scheduled for delivery. If not, request that the packages are left with a trusted neighbor or at the nearest post office.
- Do request to suspend your mail and newspaper delivery if you’re going out of town.
- Don’t leave notes on your door announcing that you’re away from home.
- Don’t leave empty boxes from high-priced items outside your home for trash collection.
- Do ask a trusted neighbor to check up on your home if you’re out of town.
- Do install durable doors and windows, and even a home security system.
Most of the tips for keeping your home secure are easy to implement for you and your family. To ensure a secure home, it’s important to be diligent and alert during the holidays and not make your home tempting to burglars.
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