Imagine someone breaking into your home, stealing your possessions and traumatizing your family. Are you ready for a scary statistic? Every 18 seconds, another home in the United States is burglarized.  You may think that sounds like a lot, and you’re right. According to these statistics, a staggering 4,800 households a day go through the emotional and financial rollercoaster of coping with being the victim of a burglary.
The good news? You don’t have to be one of them. If there was something you could do to lessen the chances of your life being impacted by burglary you would, right? Of course!
So, what can you do? Let’s discuss. Most burglars get into a house through doors or windows. In 23% of home burglaries, the burglars enter through a window.  And you know what? That means that by hardening up your defenses and making your windows less appealing targets, you are reducing your potential of being a victim.
Ready for some actionable tips? Let’s dive into 8 easy ways to burglar-proof your windows and protect your home.
1. If your windows have locks, use them
Yes, it’s common sense, and most of us are very good about closing and locking our windows when we will be away from home for a long time. Where we tend to slip up is when we are just making a quick 20-minute run to pick the kids up or grab a cup of coffee. The fact is that most burglaries occur during the daylight and burglars are quick. They need only 8-10 minutes to ransack your home and be gone.  Avoid complacency and take the extra time to secure all windows before leaving the house.
When else are you likely to leave your window open? What about when you go to bed? The breeze may feel lovely, just keep in mind that, especially in a first-floor bedroom, your open window is also inviting to burglars.
2. Install secondary locks which are visible from the outside
Your windows may not have locks, or the locks may not be very sturdy. In this case, simply add your own secondary locks or window bars.
There are pin locks and several other styles of window locks that work with everything from a double hung window to sliding windows. Choose the one designed for your particular type of window. Not sure how to install it? The internet has got your back; watch one of the many videotutorials that guide you through the process.
3. Update your landscaping
Do you remember that time you were learning to ride a bike and you ended up crashing into the rosebush? None of us voluntarily crawl through dense rosebushes or other prickly vegetation – burglars included.
Proper inhospitable landscaping near first-story windows can be a deterrent – just make sure that it is trimmed and that it won’t provide a welcome source of concealment for a would-be burglar.
Tall trees close to the home can be used as ladders to second-story windows, so keep that in mind when choosing your landscaping.
4. Choose windows made with pre-laminated glass
Burglars prefers a quiet mode of entry, but sometimes they are still willing to risk the noise of breaking a window to get in. What they aren’t willing to do is continuerepeatedly hitting a window long enough to break through the extra resistance of a pre-laminated glass.
If you are due to replace your windows, consider asking for a quote on upgrading the type of glass in the new windows.
5. Apply a break-resistant film on the inside of windows
Are you stuck with regular window glass and no plans of replacing the window in the near future? It’s okay – you too can make your window protective.
It’s quite simple really. Just add an impact resistant window film to the interior of your existing windows. This film is applied much like a window tint and it functions similarly to pre-laminated glass. Your windows will be many times stronger and harder for a burglar to break.
6. Use an alarm system that detects broken glass
Home alarm systems have come down in price and studies have confirmed their effectiveness as a crime deterrent.
To maximize your benefits, opt for a modern system that includes security cameras and motion sensors. It should have the ability to detect broken glass. The other important factor in this equation? You and your family. A home security system is only effective if it is actually armed and utilized. Consistency is key. Make arming the system part of your routine whenever you leave your home and at bedtime.
7. Close blinds or curtains
Open blinds or curtains are a window-shopping invitation to criminals. All they have to do is peep in to see what valuables you have laying around if anyone is home and even if your security system is armed or not. Make it harder for them by closing the blinds or at least angling them to obstruct the view from outside.
8. Leave an inside light on
Let your windows work for you by using them to send a potential burglar signals that someone is home and awake. After closing your blinds most of the way, turn on a light that is visible from the window.
Many burglars are opportunists and they are drawn to homes that are easy, “soft targets.” Just the simple act of leaving a light on may be enough to deter the burglar.
Now it’s time to take action – follow up on these tips and be proactive. Develop a plan, then take steps to burglar proof your windows so you can deter criminals from breaking into your home.
We would love to hear your suggestions. Leave a comment sharing your best techniques for making your windows and home safer.
Lake Bluff, Illinois' top provider of quality replacement windows and doors. My name is Russ Armstrong and I focus on offering energy efficient options for any home. All of our products and services are backed by a lifetime guarantee. Call us today for a free estimate and to find out how you can save money on your heating and cooling bills.