Let's face it, burglars are an opportunistic lot. They mostly strike based on the assumption that they'll be less likely to get caught in a chosen target compared to other potential victims. In fact, researchers say that burglars will always go for instant targets like vacant houses with no apparent security systems.
To protect your home and to make a thief think twice about selecting your house as their next target, here are five simple tricks that will help you fool and hopefully, deter, a would-be burglar:
1. Get light timers
One effective way to make it appear as if your home is occupied is by installing automatic light timers. Nope, don't just leave your lights constantly on if you're leaving your home unattended for a while. Leaving your lights on will not help deter would-be burglars and will actually do the opposite, by informing the burglar that no one's home to turn off the lights.
To keep potential burglars guessing, it's recommended that you install automatic light timers. Some programmable light timers are mechanical so you don't even need to rewire your light switches. You can also opt for wall socket timers for an even easier setup, just hook up a lamp or a night light.
Look for an automatic timer that has a "random" time interval setting. This will prevent burglars from recognizing any set schedule you have for your lights.
2. Pretend like there's someone at home when you leave
This may feel weird at first but when you think about it, it actually makes sense. If you're leaving your home unoccupied for the day, pretend that you are saying goodbye to someone.
This little trick may just discourage burglars on the prowl in your neighborhood, watching your house from afar.
Maybe a simple wave or a simple "see you later" may be enough to stop thieves from even thinking about robbing your home. This trick is obviously not feasible if you're going on an extended vacation, but if you live alone and you leave your house unattended every day, this "act" is worth a try.
3. TV glow simulators
Here's a clever gadget that should trick burglars into thinking that someone's in your house enjoying a binge-watching session on Netflix.
This little device simulates the same random, flickering light that emanates from a real TV. Position it in a bedroom or a living room and a would-be burglar should think twice about breaking into your home.
Some TV light simulators, like the one we sell in the Komando shop, feature a built-in timer so you could just set it and have it turn on at set times. If you're going away for a few a days, this little gizmo should be a part of your burglar deterrent arsenal.
4. Build a camouflaged hiding place for your valuables
Research shows that burglars, once they successfully break into a home, often target the master bedroom first since this is where most people keep their personal valuables.
They will mostly go through the obvious places like desks and dresser drawers, closets and safes quickly, in search of jewelry, weapons, personal documents and gadgets.
To make it harder for a burglar to track down your valuables, why not design a secret, camouflaged hiding place in a not too obvious area of your house?
It could be as simple as a hollowed out book in a stocked bookcase or a hidden compartment in the kitchen ceiling, anything that's out of the ordinary and "out of the box," so to speak.
Some resourceful homeowners even use everyday household fixtures like wall outlets and bathroom tiles as clever disguises for their hiding places.
Remember, the idea is to prevent the average burglar from finding your valuables since the average burglary time is a mere eight minutes. Hiding your valuables in uncommon places will hopefully make a rushing thief miss them completely.
5. Install motion detectors
Another simple but definite way to deter would-be burglars is to install motion detectors around your home. These could be as plain as motion activated light switches on your front and back door.
For a complete security system, you could opt for entry detectors and motion sensors on your doors and windows. One such system is SimpliSafe's complete home protection kit.
SimpliSafe's easy to install sensors can even alert you (and the cops) about potential break-ins through your cellphone with their contract-free 24-hour monitoring service.
Now surely, that's one trick burglars don't want to contend with.