In August, many families decide to take their vacation time. With school just a month away and business slow, now is the ideal time to take some time off. Unfortunately, home thieves are well aware of this and will scout out homes that look like easy targets.

At By Carrier we want everyone to be safe when leaving their home for a week or two so we offer some simple suggestions for how you can prevent thieves from attempting to enter your home.

Light Timers: Nothing is more inviting to a home burglar than a house with no lights. Unless you have several pit bulls lurking around the dark, you can bet someone will take a shot at robbing your home. A good idea is to set your lights on a timer that will turn lights on and off periodically throughout the night so a watching thief will think someone may be home.

Have Neighbors Help: If you live in a neighborhood where you trust your neighbors, ask them to help out. Thieves will look for stuffed mailboxes, trash that hasn’t been taken out and other signs that no one has been in the house for a few days. Asking your neighbor to pick up the mail, take out the trash and periodically spend 15 minutes in the house at night should be enough to deter a thief. Also, have neighbors look out for suspicious activity such as unmarked vans and strangers lurking near a home’s door or windows. Any of these signs can be the prelude to a break-in.

Home Security Alarms: The best defense is a reputable home alarm system. If you outfit your home with a top-of-the-line security system not only can you save money on homeowners insurance but you can almost guarantee any activity outside or inside will trigger a alarm to a call center that will then relay the signal to the local police. In many cases the sound of the alarm is enough to make thieves run for cover.

Keep Maintenance Going: Your vacation is not when you want your landscaper taking his time off too. Again, a thief who sees an overgrown lawn will assume that no one is home. If your landscapers come on schedule it will seem as if everything is running as usual and most thieves will move on to a new target.

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