YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Summertime means people will be going on vacation, leaving their homes empty to potential access by burglars.
Just last Thursday, a Youngstown woman’s home was burglarized three times in one week when she wasn’t home.
Almost 2 million burglaries are reported each year in the U.S. The Insurance Information Institute said the highest rates of home burglaries happen in July and August.
So while you’re packing your bags and getting ready for that big summer vacation, local police want you to remember a few things before hitting the road.
“Just take some common-sense precautions when you leave. Stop your mail. Put your lights on timers. Maybe have a neighbor park their car in your driveway, little things that let people know that someone may be present,” said Canfield Police Sgt. Jim Conrad.
When burglar-proofing your home, of course, lock your doors, windows, set a security alarm if you have one. Remember to remove your hidden spare key, and do your best to make the house look inhabited.
As the world gets smarter with technology, that means burglars do, too.
Before you leave, you should disconnect your computers so hackers won’t be able to get into your devices.
Sgt. Conrad said it’s also important to be careful what you post online.
“Refrain from posting pictures while you’re gone. If you really want to share your vacation with family and friends, maybe text them or email them directly,” Sgt. Conrad said.
If you’re still worried, many police departments will check on your house for you. Just give your local department a call.
“In Canfield here, we do take resident checks from our citizens,” Conrad said. “They call in right before they leave and all of our patrol officers will check the house multiple times a day.”
According to Safewise.com, a website that compares home security systems, most burglaries happen between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., and the majority of break-ins are committed by burglars who live nearby.
Almost 30 percent of burglars enter through doors or windows, and most burglars usually go to the master bedroom first. Safewise says most criminals can burglarize a home in less than 10 minutes, and the average property dollar loss per burglary is about $2,250.