Knowledge is power when it comes to home protection. This is especially applicable to preventing home burglaries. The first step to preventing a burglar from targeting your home is to understand the typical patterns burglars follow leading up to a home break-in.
Most burglary incidents begin with a casing, which is when the burglar thoroughly examines a house for information like:
- Who lives in the home
- The residents’ typical schedule
- Which cars the residents drive
- Any hidden keys
- If the homeowners have pets and what kind/how many
Once a burglar knows your typical routine, they usually wait for a break in the pattern to burglarize your home — for example, you leave for vacation and your lights are off for days on end.
Luckily, burglars have common casing habits so you know what to be on guard for. The typical signs of your home being cased include:
- Seeing unusual cars or people in your neighborhood
- Experiencing door-to-door scams
- Noticing weird flyers piling up
Below, we will look at the 3 signs in-depth and then talk about ways you can protect your home against burglary.
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Casing Sign #1: Unusual cars or people in your neighborhood
While not every stranger in your neighborhood is a burglar, keep an eye out for cars or people you don’t recognize lingering around and acting strangely. Strange behavior includes people walking past your home multiple times — sometimes while taking photos — or sitting in a car watching people.
Casing Sign #2: Door-to-Door scams
Contrary to popular belief, burglars do not usually burst through your window in the dead of night. Burglars tend to go through the front door during the day when people are at home and kids are still at school, according to Alarm.com.
Since burglars operate in the daytime, they rely heavily on door-to-door scams for the purpose of gaining access to your home.
One popular scam burglars use is pretending to be from a legitimate home services company in order to scope out your valuables and unlock your doors/windows. For example, they may pretend to work for an HVAC, plumbing or pest control company — maybe even one that you’ve used recently — and say that they “forgot something” or “need to do one more thing.” In this instance, reach out to your home services provider to verify their identity, especially if you do not have a follow-up appointment scheduled.
Burglars may pretend to be these types of innocent people:
- People fundraising for charity
- Religious workers
- Survey takers
- People experiencing an emergency (lost pet, broken down car, etc.)
- Craigslist buyers
- Lost and trying to find the right house
- Door-to-door salespeople
To be clear, we’re not suggesting that anyone who knocks on your door identifying as one of the above types is a burglar. We do recommend being cautious and verifying identities and places of business when possible before allowing them into your home.
Casing Sign #3: Strange flyers piling up
Burglars may also stick flyers through your door to tag an unoccupied home. They use the flyers to measure how fast you collect them to tell whether you’re home or on vacation.
You will want to collect any flyers piling up ASAP. If you’re leaving for vacation, it’s a good idea to have a friend house sit because pausing mail and mailmen no longer stopping by could tip off burglars that you aren’t home.
How do I protect my home from burglars?
Now that we’ve looked at all the major signs that your Richmond home is being cased, let’s talk about solutions that will help protect your home:
- Have cameras installed at your door: You’ll want cameras that will record and upload footage to the cloud. A video doorbell is best since you can track strange people or cars lingering near your home, as well as answer the door when you aren’t home.
- Have a home security system with an alarm installed: Make sure you don’t try to fake having home security (e.g. the sticker without the system installed or a fake surveillance camera). Burglars aren’t deterred by surveillance cameras because they believe cameras are an indicator that the home has valuables inside. 60% of burglars are likely to target another home if they see an alarm, according to a Science Daily study.
- Integrate your home security system with smart home products: This integration will allow you to control your lights, TV and radio in real-time from your phone. This is important because most burglars will not attempt to burglarize a home with the lights and radio/TV on. On top of deceiving burglars, smart home security systems will let you lock your doors/windows from your phone so you don’t have to worry if you forget.
Want peace-of-mind from burglars? Contact Richmond Alarm
If you’re looking for an experienced security company with sophisticated security products, contact our team. We have 70+ years of experience designing great security solutions that work best for your needs.
For example, we can install smart home security systems and HD surveillance cameras that will allow you to control a video doorbell, door locks and lights from your phone. Our systems also integrate with smart home products (e.g. Alexa, Google Home) so you can play TV/radio in real-time to throw off burglars.
Get your home security systems installed or upgraded by clicking the button or calling us at 804-745-1117.