Is Your Home Attracting Burglars?

Burglars often target homes and properties based on the characteristics of a successful break-in, according to Peel Regional Police.

There are an average of seven residential break-ins daily in Brampton and Mississauga, and police say that some homes are more susceptible to break-ins than others.

Those homes and properties more vulnerable to break-ins include corner lots and homes that back onto parks and other open spaces, homes with shrubs or trees that hide accessible doors and windows, and homes that don't look lived in.

Homes that are less accessible, with doors and windows in the open, have their flyers and mail picked up, lights on timers, and a well maintained property are less likely to experience a break-in.

As upsetting as a burglary can be, burglars do target homes and properties, as opposed to targeting residents. There are ways for residents to discourage burglars from targeting their homes.

Peel Regional Police's Home Security Challenge guides residents through self-audits of their homes, checking the security of windows and doors, interior and exterior lighting, and valuables.

According to the challenge, all exterior doors should have a deadbolt with at least a one-inch throw, windows next to doors should be reinforced with a polycarbonate panel, and valuables should be stored in basements or safety deposit boxes.

Further, when residents are away from their homes, lights should be left on timers both inside and outside, a trusted neighbour or friend should pick up any flyers or mail left on the doorstep, and arrangements should be made to have the lawn cut or the snow shoveled to give a home the illusion of occupancy.

Residents can also benefit from securing sliding doors and windows, knowing neighbours from across the street and on all three sides of their home, and keeping garage doors closed and locked at all times.

If a break-in has occurred, police advise residents to speak to their immediate neighbours and let them know there was a break-in and to be on the alert for all of the homes in the area.

While no one can predict whether a burglar will target and break into their home, there are ways to improve home security to minimize that risk.

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