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8 Things Burglars Look for When Targeting Homes

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Things Burglars Look for When Targeting Homes

Some burglaries are opportunistic. A passing dishonest person might, for example, see an open door and decide there and then to take whatever they can. However, many burglaries are far from random. Instead, professional burglars scope out homes first and choose their targets carefully.

So, what do burglars look for when they are checking out a neighborhood? And what can you do to reduce the chances of your home becoming a target for a break-in? Here are eight things that burglars look for when targeting homes and some tips on avoiding your home becoming a target.

1. Open Windows

It’s nice to let some fresh air into the home sometimes. But an open window is like an invitation to a burglar. An open window can provide easy access into the house for a thief. And, if a window is open, the burglar Alarm is likely to be switched off, too. So, be sure to close all the windows of your home whenever you leave the property unattended.

2. Unlocked Doors

Believe it or not, a common entry point for burglars is the front door because a surprising number of people often leave doors to their homes unlocked. Indeed, one of the first things burglars look for when targeting homes is an unlocked door. So, lock all doors when you go out, even if you will only be gone for a few minutes.

3. Open Garage Doors

An open garage provides a burglar with an easy route into your home. And, of course, you probably have valuable items in your garage. If you leave your garage door open, a burglar can walk right in and close the door behind them. Then, they can work unseen on opening the internal door into your home. What’s more, you probably have tools stored in your garage that help the burglar break into your home. So, an open garage door is a burglar’s dream!

4. No Security System

When a burglar is looking for a home to break into, they will be scouting around for a house with no home security system. Indeed, when surveyed, 60% of burglars said that they would always skip homes with burglar alarms because they posed too much of a risk. So, if you haven’t already done so, have an alarm system installed in your home. Or, invest in a wireless home security system that you can install yourself.

5. No Dogs

Dogs bark, which can draw attention to a burglar, and dogs can bite, too. So, the bad guys are certainly not canine lovers. For that reason, another thing that will put a burglar off targeting a home is any signs that a dog might reside in the property. So, even if you don’t like dogs yourself, get a “beware of the dog” sign anyway because it will still make a burglar think twice about breaking into your home.

6. Valuables on Display

Professional burglars will weigh up the pros and cons of breaking into a home before committing the crime. So, as well as looking for security systems, they will also be considered if there will be anything worth stealing inside the property. If you leave valuable items like computers and jewelry where they can be seen, you give the bad guys an incentive to break in. So, keep expensive items away from windows or close blinds and curtains to hide valuables.

7. Poor External Lighting

A poorly lit home will make it easier for a burglar to break in unnoticed. So, installing external security lighting will dissuade a thief from targeting your home. Keep shrubbery and trees well-trimmed, too. You don’t want to provide any cover under which a burglar can operate out of sight.

8. Empty Homes

Burglars prefer to target homes they are sure are empty. So, when they check out potential targets, they will be looking for signs that no one is at home. Therefore, it is crucial to take steps not to make it too obvious the house is empty and secure your home when you go away. Ask a neighbor to bring in the mail and, for example. Use timers to switch lights on and off. And please don’t advertise that you will be away from home on your social media accounts!


To sum up, the less appealing you make your home to burglars, the lower your chances of your house becoming a target. So, keep valuable items hidden, and try to make your home look lived in when you are away. And ensure the outside of your home is well-lit, and install a home security system.

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