Clever Ways to keep Burglars at Bay

dont let burglars spring clean your house

You can find many articles which will give you tips on how to deter burglars. At IKS Locksmiths we have written The Ultimate Guide to Burglary Prevention which leaves no stone unturned. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about how to secure your home. Of course door and window security locks are not only the best burglar deterrent, they will also actually keep the burglars out!

Now it’s time to take it a step further and give you some clever tricks that will give you the edge when it comes to out smarting those shifty individuals who make a dishonest living from conspiring against us. Following these tips will greatly reduce the chance of your home being targeted in the first place.

Here are some burglar deterrent tips that are low cost and easy to implement.

The key message is to Fake It! Give the illusion that you are home. It is time to beat the burglar at their own game and master the art of deception.

It is important to recognise that burglars are interested in watching our every move. When targeting a property a burglar will observe the owners habits, routines and movements. What we need to do is make their job a difficult as possible.

No cost easy options

When it come to burglar deterrents there are many steps you can take that cost nothing and require very little effort.

These ideas are best practice as a general rule

A well kept garden will keep burglars at bay. If the appearance of your home is consistently neat this will give the impression that you are staying in the property. Mow the lawn and keeping foliage neat, this will not only show that you are home but it will avoid providing intruders places to lurk! A wild and unruly garden is a burglars dream job.

Hide packaging of any new items. Turn them inside out. Also Mark your belongings so they can be easily identified if they do get stolen.


label valuables
Image by West Midlands Police via Flickr

Be creative when hide your valuables! Not the bedroom, it’s too obvious. The fridge? Freezer? Landry bin? There are lots of options when you really think about it.

Image by Joe King via Flickr
Image by Joe King via Flickr

Be aware when placing ladder and mirrors. Ladders in the garden can be used for easy access and mirrors placed to show the interior of your home are an open invitation to burglars. Carefully consider where you position them.

Don’t broadcast your plans on Social Media. You never know who is watching. Comments like “So excited to go on holiday tomorrow! ” are an invitation to a potential intruder.

burglary and social media
Image by Sean MacEntee via Flickr

Neighbourhood watch is a great intruder deterrent. It just takes an individual to take the initiative to get it set up for your street and it benefits the area as a whole. Stickers in the windows and posters on the lamp posts will leave intruders in no doubt that they are being watched. Thank you to Ann Cooper for setting it up on my street!

Beware of the dog signs are a good deterrent even if you don’t have a dog. Actual dogs are even better! Especially the small noisy type of dog that will bark at any sign of movement. There are even dog barking door bells available! I know someone who takes it a step further and leaves a dog bowl and bone suitable for a giant dog outside the house.

Image by Mandee Sears via Flickr
Image by Mandee Sears via Flickr

When you Leave the House

Leaving the radio on is a great way to make it seem as if you are home when you have just popped out to the shops.

You may feel foolish but calling “Good bye!” to an imaginary person as you leave the house is well worthwhile. You may not realise that you are being watched.

wave bye to imaginary friend
Image by Jared eberhardt via Flickr

When you Leave to Go on Holiday

Pack the car quickly and discreetly. Choose a time when there are not many people around. Be aware of who is watching. Don’t draw the process out. Only people you trust should know that your property will be left empty.

Ask a trusted neighbour to keep an eye on things and look out for anything unusual while you’re away. Ask them to ensure that there aren’t flyers or post sticking out of the letter box.

Carefully consider a plan for regular deliveries. Remember that burglars monitor our habits and look for any changes to the normal routine. If they notice that the regular post or newspaper delivery has been cancelled it is a green light for them. On the other hand milk piling up on your doorstep is also a green light.

Low Cost Effective Options

There are burglar deterrent devices available that are relatively low cost and effective.

Light timers are well worth the investment. Lights left permanently off or on for days are like an open invitation to a burglar.

Garden Lights with movements sensors are very off putting for a burglar who isn’t keen to be in the spotlight.

A dummy CCTV camera on your property would make a burglar think twice about targeting your property. Ideally you would have the real thing.

A dummy alarm box can have a similar effect. Both these options are relatively low cost.

Fake TV is even an option.

A Cost Worth Considering

Double glazing or toughened glass are an expense that could be worth considering in certain cases.

CCTV these days allows you to monitor your home from your mobile phone. It’s an expense that could be worthwhile for those that can’t stop worrying about their property while on holiday. You will be surprised how useful it can be to know what’s going on at your property when you not home.

check cctv on the beach
Image by Michael Coghlan via Flickr

Installing a safe for your belongings is advisable. They are available in a range of sizes, types and costs.

IKS Locksmiths are based in North London and we are specialists home security approved by the Master Locksmith Association. I hope you have gleaned some useful information on how to deter burglars. We would be happy to answer any questions you may have or to review your home security with a free security survey.

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