Safeguard your home to have a worry-free spring vacation
With spring break just around the corner, many people are busy planning their vacations and preparing to leave Minneapolis. Minneapolis Police want to remind vacationers to take a few minutes to secure their homes so that they can have a worry-free vacation.
Most burglaries are a crime of opportunity, committed by amateurs, and unoccupied homes are a tempting target. So your best protection is to make your home appear occupied and to make it difficult to break in to. Follow these simple, easy-to-follow tips as a checklist to help protect your home against break-ins and theft while you’re away.
- Install good locks on windows and doors and be sure to use to them.
- Avoid leaving a spare key anywhere outside your home.
- Make arrangements to suspend mail, newspaper and package deliveries or ask a neighbor to pick them up.
- Arm your home security alarm if you have one.
- Set up timers around your home to turn TVs, lamps and radios on and off at appropriate hours; install motion detectors around your home.
- Turn down the ringer volume on your phone to avoid having someone hear it go unanswered.
- Keep blinds, shades or curtains the way they are when you are home.
- Close and lock garage doors and windows; secure storage sheds.
- Have trusted neighbors to keep an eye on your home during your vacation, but generally keep travel plans to yourself—don’t announce your absence on voice-mail; tell your co-workers not to give out your travel plans.
- Mark your property: record make, model and serial numbers and take pictures of electronic equipment and valuables; use the free national police program Operation ID to mark and inventory your valuables. Just call (612) 673-2749 to request an information packet. Should your property be stolen, this simple step will make it more difficult for thieves to sell it and easier for police to return it to you.
For more ideas to secure your home while youre away or for information about how to enroll in Operation ID, contact your police precincts Crime Prevention Specialist by visiting the Police website. Click on Precinct Finder and CCP/SAFE Team links.
Remember, as always, remind your neighbors to call 911 immediately to report any suspicious activity.
Published Mar. 11, 2008