How to Protect Your House from Theft Securing Doors

About the proper techniques to secure your doors protecting your house from theft and burglary.

HOW TO PROTECT YOUR HOME FROM THEFT

Securing Doors

Most intruders go in and out of your house the same way you do--through the doors. So all doors in your home should be protected. But keep in mind that you must protect more than just your front and back doors. There are also the sliding door to the patio, the door to the basement from outside, and the door to the house from the garage. The last one is the one most people forget.

When a burglar wants to break into a house, time is of the essence. Anything you can do to slow him down will deter him from choosing your house. And the best method of deterrence is good locks.

The average burglar does not pick locks. He walks in through open doors, breaks down doors, or simply trips mechanisms on cheap door hardware. The best protection against this casual burglar is to have a deadbolt lock on every door in your house, including sliding glass doors. These are relatively inexpensive and easy to install.

Be aware that certain deadbolts lock from the inside with a key. They make life difficult for the burglar, but can be deadly for the inhabitants of the house if precautions are not taken. With this kind of lock, a key should be immediately accessible. In case you need to get out of the house quickly for any reason, fumbling for a key will simply delay you. Everyone in the house, including children, should know where that key is at all times and should be able to reach the lock to open it.

If you do not want to install a deadbolt on a sliding glass door, the simplest way to protect that door from being opened from the outside is to place a stick in the track of the door when it is closed. The stick should fit as tightly as possible in the length of the track. This way, even if someone jimmies the lock on the sliding glass door (and most of these are pretty flimsy), he will not be able to slide the door open. It is also a good idea to attach a piece of wood to the inside of the top door track. This will fill the space between the top of the door and the door frame and will prevent someone from lifting the door out of the track.

Your bedroom door should also have a lock on it. Again, the lock should be easy to open from inside. Just in case someone does manage to break in, you have put up one more obstacle between you and him.

Most burglars are not interested in a confrontation, but you never can tell. So if you hear someone, lock your bedroom door and call the police. This requires one more security device--a telephone in your bedroom.

Whatever you do, do not confront the burglar. Let him take what he wants. Do not surprise him. Pretend you are asleep and do not take any chances.

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