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I've had two theft incidents in the last month. The first was my own car being broken into with a crow bar right outside my bedroom window at night, the second was just last night someone knocking down a large road sign and taking a bike. 

Any suggestions for building security? 

How do you prevent these types of theft?

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@ddsk1191 Oh Gosh!!! That's horrible to hear. 

I wish I could say cameras "help" but I have yet to see a camera be used to actually get a criminal and if it did help they are only in jail for 24 hours. We had one drunk driver leave their apartment, go full throttle, ramp over a snow berm, and run into the back and was half inside our leasing van.  After camera, pictures, and more,  he was convicted of hit (no jail time) and run and damages of $750!!!!  (because we had uninsured motorist so the real damage they claims was a deductible and time to drop it off at a shop. That's all.  Since he was a retired person - having a record had no impact on him.

We had another case where the guy broke into a vacant rental and stole the hot water tank and sold it on the street to a! "craigslist maintenance guy".  We had cameras and he had parked his "RV" and was living in the vacant grass nearby. So we caught him but he was only in jail for 24 hours and a fine of $1200.  The damage wasn't worth an insurance claim but it hurt the vacancy and the neighbors feel of comfort.  So in review, cameras helped find them - but it didn't do anything to make this town stop or realize the pain it caused others.

I believe the best answer is dang good insurance.  Do work on the house that reduces the risk of damage. Plenty of LIGHTS!! Be the brightest on the block.  Fence and cement structures to assist cars running into the yard.  I once used railroad boards. Enforce the locks to be those extra long screws. And so on.....I think we just have to add layers of protection on our own. Reflective window film.

I'm sure @Ben Persinger could provide a list of things that can be done to reduce the risk from a contractor viewpoint.

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Sorry to hear this. Unfortunately it seems to be an ongoing issue for many people myself included.  I have on property in a good area with decent lighting and we still have break-ins once a year or so.  Typically these are people who leave the door unlocked or something but not always.


Beefing up your security depends a bit on the layout of the property and how much you want to spend. I feel having visible cameras that are close enough so that it is harder for the riffraff to avoid being seen and identified can help to some degree as well as adding more lighting that illuminates the parking area. On general building security, (depending if this is a multi family or single home) installing a secured entry with something like a keypad lock set can help. I would also recommend that deadbolts be installed with the steel reinforcing plate behind the trim plate on the door jamb.  I see these left out fairly often and it makes it much easier to kick in the door. Securing common areas with keypad knobs is a good idea as well and keeping the common areas well lit is a good idea. There are now quite a few options for having lighting come on and off at random to make it look like someone is up and about.  Obviously this doesn't work for bedrooms, but you could set up a light in the living room to turn on and off at random. I have had vacant homes that I set up a could table lamps in different parts of the home on timers with led bulbs (very inexpensive to operate).  It just makes it look like someone might be up and moving about in the home at odd times. I recently watched a great youtube video of a former thief who explained how he cased homes.  Might be worth a watch.  


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See I know you @Ben Persinger would mention things that I forgot.  Love the video!!  

I just got my new home and first thing I did was the lights and the steel plates with the long strong screws to go into the wall. I've seen it stop a robbery!!

I'm in the process of converting more of the lights to LED On/Off on the Light sensor and some with a motion to help with being the brightest place around.  It worked at my last place, the others were robbed but not us.


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