The holidays are a wonderful time of year–sipping hot cocoa with friends, sitting by the fireplace, eating delicious meals, receiving gifts…but it's also burglars' favorite time of year, too. According to the FBI, each year nearly 400,000 burglaries take place between November and December each year. Experts say that families should be extra careful around the holidays with the following tips.
- Install a home security system. One of the biggest deterrents to burglary is a home alarm system. In fact, a Rutgers University School of Criminal Justice study found that installing one reduces the likelihood of a burglary by 20%.
- Don't advertise your travel plans online. That's right, don't announce it to the world on Facebook or your other social networking sites. It's like inviting a burglar over to your house while you're away. Also, don't leave your house looking like you're gone. Instead, get a neighbor to watch your house (if you can), leave a car in the driveway, and have your mail and newspapers picked up each day so that they don't pile up and make it clear that you're gone.
- Don't display your gifts. Regardless of whether you celebrate Hanukkah or Christmas, burglars will gladly take your gifts dazzling underneath the tree or elsewhere. You don't want to make them visible through your home's windows or doors. Even after your presents are unwrapped, burglars are known to go through trash cans looking for empty boxes that indicate you've got some new pricey goods like that TV or computer. Cut up the boxes and make sure not to throw the big boxes on the street to be thrown away.
- Double-check your home's doors and windows. Burglars will look for the easy way out and in–like through unsturdy windows and doors. Both new and old homes can be affected, since newer homes tend to be built with cheaper materials and older homes may show signs of rot or decay. Go to your home improvement store and talk to the employees about what you can do to protect your home during the holidays.
- Be aware of your surroundings. This might sound kind of paranoid, but most burglars live in the neighborhood where they are likely to steal. When bringing in merchandise from a shopping trip, make sure not to show it off or make it too obvious that you've got new and expensive items in your home.
Here's to a happy and safe holiday season!
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.
If it's OK with the community, I would like to share an article that provides some more additional tips on how to better protect your home from a burglar:
Burglar Reveals 15 Trade Secrets - A Look Into The Mind of a Burglar
Feel free to share or re-post!
thank U Kevin...helpful info...enjoy the holidays
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