Profile of a Burglar

French Door BurglarEvery 14.6 seconds, a burglary takes place in the United States. Apart from the sometimes devastating financial effects, a home invasion or burglary can leave you feeling helpless, emotional, or scared. I was the victim of two burglaries and one home invasion as a child in southwest Florida and I only wish my parents had the tools, knowledge, and technology to secure our family’s home that is available today. Thankfully, the chance of being victimized by a truly professional thief is low in the average American neighborhood, but those odds can go up dramatically in high-income areas where the rewards of precious jewelry, fine art, gold, or other valuables are more enticing. No matter where you live the stakes are high and protecting your loved ones and property from a burglar is absolutely paramount.

Luckily, we know a lot about the average burglar and can use this knowledge against them to protect ourselves as responsible homeowners. Typical home burglars are unsophisticated, with the majority being male teenagers who live within a few miles of their victim’s home. While the movies portray burglaries occurring by masked robbers creeping about in the middle of the night, most residential burglaries actually occur between 10 am and 3 pm, presumably when the homeowners are out running errands or working.

Although a monitored alarm system is an excellent component of a complete home security plan, it simply can’t prevent someone from gaining access to a home. Thieves know how long the police response times are in their area, they also know the response time of the alarm monitoring companies. Burglars race the clock and use both alarm response and police response times to their advantage. Today’s burglars need to work fast and want to spend no more than 60 seconds trying to gain access to a home. If it takes longer than that they will often move on. Measures that increase a burglar’s time – hard to pick deadbolt locks, locked windows, and secured sliding doors – might just change a burglar’s mind.

If they do gain entry to a residence, burglars spend an average of just 8 to 12 minutes in their victim’s home. Burglar’s favorite finds are guns, prescription medications, cash, electronics, and jewelry. If valuables are hidden from plain view or stored in heavy, bolted down, burglary rated safes, it may make a thief’s job take much longer dramatically upping the chances they will leave empty-handed or in handcuffs. Even with an alarm system, thieves are often gone before police can respond. Over 80% of home burglaries go unsolved each year.

Unfortunately there is no such thing as a burglar-proof home or community, but with a few simple, cost-effective adjustments, we can make a burglar’s job as inconvenient, time-consuming, and difficult as possible and greatly reduce the likelihood that this will happen to you or those you care about. Call us to rekey your locks and we will include a FREE home security survey. Just mention this offer when you schedule your appointment and we will make sure you have a very good understanding of the opportunities burglars may have for entering your home.