It seems like common sense to illuminate your home to deter criminals from attempting to enter your property or burglarize your home. Personal safety and property protection are the two most common reasons why homeowners would choose to leave a light (or two) on either inside or outside when not at home. But are there times when a light on sends a different message to someone with malicious intent?
Home Break-Ins Stats
According to the Criminal Justice Information Services Division of the FBI, there are 1.5 million home break-ins on average a year in the United States. Locking doors, shutting windows and keeping lights on when not home are three deterrents that every homeowner should follow.
This statistic may be alarming to homeowners, but if you know the right steps to take to safeguard your home (including keeping the lights on at the right times) in combination with other home security techniques, you can potentially avoid the trauma of a home burglary.
When Should Lights Be Left On?
The idea behind leaving lights on comes from the belief that burglars will avoid a home that looks occupied, in favor of one that is less secure or risks quick detection.
There are many instances when lights should be left on in a home or apartment.
When a resident is home and awake, the lights should be on at night. This sends a message to a potential criminal that your home is not the best target.
When a homeowner has gone out for the evening and would like illumination to navigate their way back into the home.
When To Keep The Lights Off
There are some times and instances when a light on in a home can send a message that the house is not occupied and therefore a good target.
Don’t leave the lights on all day. This sends a message that your home is not occupied.
Don’t leave the same lights on at the same time every day during your vacation. Criminals who “case” or use surveillance to track homes can easily determine that a family is not home.
Turn off the lights when you head to bed. FBI stats show that homes are broken into more during daylight hours so that light you leave on all night probably isn’t doing much to help.
Turn off lights in rural areas. Security experts agree that leaving a light on all night only aids a criminal to find their way in the dark. In a city, a light would help protect a home but in rural areas, the light helps the criminal more than the homeowner.
Lighting Suggestions for Security
Lighting systems are just one component of a home security system. Door alarms, cameras, automated locks, and sensors can help protect your most valuable possession – your home.
Using automated lights or light sensors that come on when triggered by movement can work in conjunction with home security systems to make your home less appealing to criminals hoping to access your property or home.
For more information about home security systems and what may be right for your family, talk to our experts and get started deterring burglars from your property.
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