Property crime makes up slightly more than three-quarters of all crime in the United States. However, many people do not take simple measures that could help deter burglars from breaking into your house. For example, many people let their absences be obvious and fail to lock doors and windows, both of which are signals to experienced thieves.
There are simple things that homeowners can do to not only protect their homes, but also save money on home insurance. Just like with car insurance, if you have theft deterrence features on your house, like an alarm, chances are you will save on your homeowners insurance.
Change the Locks When You Move In
You never know who might have keys to your house. If your new home does not have deadbolts on all ground level doors, think about installing them. If a sliding glass door is easily accessible, it is a good idea to put a strip of wood in the lower tract to keep outsiders from getting the door open.
Install an Alarm: Protect Your Home and Save on Homeowners Insurance
You may also want to install an alarm if the house doesn’t already have one. If you move into a new house with an alarm, make sure you get written directions explaining how to operate it. Not only will it deter thieves from breaking into your home, but it can also lower your homeowners insurance premium.
Always Lock Your Doors and Windows
Keep your doors locked, even if you step out for just a few minutes. Remember to lock all doors at night and when you go on vacation. Similarly, keep your windows locked. Check that all windows have locks when you move into a new house. If they don’t, install locks or replace the window.
Trust a Neighbor with a Key
Leave a key with a trusted neighbor in case anything happens to your house while you are away, or in case you get locked out. It’s usually not a good idea to leave a key hidden outside your house, especially in more urban areas.
It is also a good idea to leave at least one visible light on, if not more. Report broken street lights to the city or to your homeowner’s association. Well-lit areas mean less hiding places for burglars. Similarly, report any suspicious strangers you notice loitering in your neighborhood.
A home security system can help protect your family and property from break-ins. If you have an alarm installed, notify your homeowners insurance provider to see if you can save on your homeowners insurance policy. You should also shop around for homeowners insurance at least once a year to maximize your savings. Using InsWeb.com’s online questionnaire, you can easily compare quotes from multiple homeowners insurance providers in minutes.