Burglaries are common at Christmas. The warm glow of home and hearth, plus the knowledge that expensive gifts are in abundance, makes the holiday season catnip for thieves. To better protect your home at this time of year, here are a few tips to keep in mind.
1. Show discretion on social media
In this age of Facebook and Twitter, we’re used to broadcasting our every move to the masses. But if you’re planning to be away from home for Christmas vacation and want it to stay protected, it would be best not to announce your holiday plans online, in case a ‘friend of a friend’ also happens to be staking out potential targets for a Christmas burglary.
2. Be neighbourly.
Talk to your neighbours and agree to watch out for each other’s homes. Stay-at-home parents can keep their eyes peeled for troubling activity during the day, and night owls can be alert after the sun goes down. Online Christmas shopping often means boxes are sitting on the porch (an obvious theft magnet), so neighbours can agree to sign for packages or to at least look out for potential thieves.
3. Increase your home security measures
Needless to say, the Christmas season is not a good time leave doors unlocked or security alarms turned off. Make sure you are set up with a security system you can trust.
4. Don’t flaunt your Christmas goodies
You want your decorated home to look suitable for a spread in the Christmas edition of Better Homes and Gardens? Well, it might be best to keep the holiday charm on the inside, so you don’t draw too much attention from potential burglars outside. Strings of lights along the roof and around the bushes shouldn’t be a problem, but it might be best not to stack enticing, exquisitely-wrapped presents so high that they’re easily visible in your front window – or to wrap a giant gift bow around a brand new vehicle in the driveway.
5. Be careful who you let into your home
Caterers for holiday parties or delivery people are among those who you might be getting into the house around Christmas time but don’t allow just anyone in the door. Try to deal with only reputable people and organisations so you don’t give sketchy strangers easy opportunities to case your home. If the worst happens and a crime is committed by someone you let in, then a camera can help you capture the evidence Police need.
6. Keep your valuables out of sight
Speaking of holiday parties, they offer lots of opportunity to sticky-fingered guests. Of course, you probably trust most of your invited guests, but you may not know much about friends or dates that they might be bringing to your Christmas party. If you’re having guests stay during the holiday season, then you might want to monitor the no-go zones of your home.
A little caution can go a long way to creating a safe and merry Christmas for all!