How much do you know about home security? Is your home safe from burglary and fire? Here are 9 surprising home security monitoring fast facts you need to know.
1. Burglaries Happen
Burglaries happen every day. One burglary occurs every 15 seconds. Over two million American homes experience a burglary each year. What are the odds of your home making the list? About 1 in 36.
2. Know Your Burglars
So who are burglars? Where do they come from? Why do they do it? Most burglars are teenage boys living less than two miles from your home. It could be your neighbor’s son or a kid from a few blocks down. Teenagers steal for a variety of reasons. Some steal to rebel. Kids from troubled homes steal for attention. Others steal for money. Some just steal for the thrill.
3. How Burglars Get Inside
So how do these teenage boys get inside your house? The majority walk right in through your front door. Here are the statistics:
- 34% use the front door
- 23% use a first floor window
- 22% use the back door
- 9% use the garage
- 6% use unlocked side entrances
- 4% use the basement
- 2% use the second floor
- 61% of entries use force
- The majority of burglaries take place between 10 am and 3 pm
Some burglars canvas a neighborhood looking for unlocked doors and windows. They knock on doors dressed as sales reps, landscapers, or other legitimate professionals. If no one is home, in they go. Locked doors and windows are easily shattered, kicked in, or broken into. Burglars aim to spend no more than a minute breaking into your house and between 8 and 12 minutes inside. The first place they look for valuables is the master bedroom.
4. The Cost Of A Burglary
The average amount stolen from a house in 2012 was 2,230, according to the FBI. What do burglars take?
- Prescription Medicine
Losing over $2000 is bad enough. Additional property damage brings the total even higher. Doors and windows are expensive to replace. Burglars occasionally vandalize property for fun before leaving. Your insurance probably covers some of the property damage. Most policies require the home owner pay a certain deductible. Check your policy to see how high the deductible is.
Burglars are likely to return. They know your home’s layout. They know where you keep your valuables. Your home is twice as likely to experience a second break in once one happens. This means you need to invest in a good home security monitoring system as well as additional security features.
Some homeowners pursue legal action. Only 13% of burglaries get solved. So many occur each year that law enforcement cannot follow every lead. Paying for a lawyer to take up your case costs thousands of dollars. It is not uncommon for a victim to pay up to $20,000 by the time a burglary is resolved.
Burglaries are emotionally traumatic. Health care costs and time off from work to deal with a burglary costs you money and time.
5. Serious Emotional Repercussions
What kinds of emotional issues arise from burglaries? Imagine returning to your home and finding it in shambles. How would you feel? Your home is a place where you feel safe. Burglars violate that safety. Victims of burglaries report feelings of anxiety, depression, anger, guilt, sadness, and insomnia.
The emotional repercussions are serious. Anxiety and anger invade every aspect of your life. Depression makes it hard to function. Insomnia can aggravate these conditions. Burglars steal family heirlooms as well as cash. Grief over losing a reminder of a loved one is hard to overcome. Some victims experience guilt for failing to protect their homes and families from burglaries. These feelings are natural and may require professional help to overcome.
6. Burglars Target Unoccupied Homes
Burglars prefer unoccupied homes. They strike while you are at work or on vacation. Take precautions before you head for the office or go out of town. Leave a television or radio on. This presents the illusion of occupation. Leave on one or two lights. If possible, leave a car in the driveway. Turn off the mail and newspaper delivery before you go out of town. A full mailbox or pile of newspapers is a dead giveaway that you are gone. It is also the perfect opportunity for an identity thief to get a hold of your information.
Sometimes homes that look unoccupied actually have a loved one inside. A family member is present for a terrifying 28% of burglaries. Violent crimes occur in 7% of all burglaries. This number seems low until it is compared to the percentage of burglaries with family present.
7. Prevent Burglaries With Security Systems
So how can you prevent a burglary? The most effective solution is a home security monitoring system. Burglars are three time more likely to break into a home without a home security system. Convicted burglars admit that they intentionally avoid homes with security systems and check for obvious security signs like window stickers and yard signs before breaking in.
Burglars who do enter a home with a security system spend less time inside. Less time means fewer stolen possessions and interior damage. Plus the use of monitoring technology increases the likelihood of identifying the burglar. Installing security cameras is an effective method for detecting suspicious activity, identifying suspects, and deterring burglars.
8. Fire Prevention
Burglaries are not the only risks that security systems prevent. Smoke detectors save lives. Security systems that detect carbon monoxide as well as intruders are an excellent way to protect your family.
Your family is more likely to experience a house fire than a burglary. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that the average household experiences 5 fires over a lifetime. These fires range from large house fires to small kitchen fires. Make sure your home is protected even when you are away with a security system that monitors for fires.
9. Insurance Perks
There are additional perks to home security monitoring. Most insurance companies offer discounts for homes with security features. Discounts range from ten to twenty percent. Alarm systems, dead bolts, window grates and other security measures all may qualify. Check with your insurance company to see what your policy entails.
Take The Next Step
Now that you know these home security monitoring fast facts, take the next step. Install a home security system today to keep your home and family safe.