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Protecting Your Home

Crime Prevention is defined is the anticipation, recognition, and appraisal of a crime risk, and the initiation of some action to remove or reduce it. You can have a significant effect upon the security of your residence by taking a few moments to assess its weaknesses and a few more moments to take simple actions to eliminate or strengthen those weaknesses. Keeping your residence neat and clean, in good repair, and giving the appearance of being home is the first fundamental step toward preventing crime there.

The second fundamental step toward home crime prevention is to be a good neighbor. Get to know your neighbors and their habits to the extent that you can recognize deviations from normal behavior (and they can do the same for you). Call the police when you observe a stranger behaving in a suspicious manner (loitering and observing, approaching multiple residences without apparent business, or removing property from a neighbor's residence). A cooperative neighborhood can increase everyone's collective home security with very little individual effort or time.

A third fundamental step is to take prompt action to address maintenance problems affecting your security; report burnt-out lights, uncollected trash, graffiti, broken windows, defective security systems and other conditions which detract from the secure appearance of your residence promptly to the appropriate authorities for correction.

Finally, make an effort to cooperate with and support your law enforcement provider. Introduce yourself to the officers who patrol your neighborhood; participate in organized resident meetings and programs. In order to "protect your home", you have to learn to "think like a thief". Consider how a criminal might attack you, your home, or your belongings, and eliminate as many of the opportunities or vulnerable points as you can. When you've done your best, ask a trusted friend to try the same thing. When you've addressed any new problems your friend points out, then consider asking your local law enforcement provider whether they conduct home security surveys; if they do, schedule one.

Consider how your name appears on public listings like telephone directories; it is generally considered prudent for females not to list their first name, but instead to list a first initial and last name. While unlisting your telephone number costs extra with some providers, the privacy may be worth the cost. Bear in mind, however, that unlisting your number will not prevent random malicious calls or telephone solicitation.

The single best protection against theft loss is to mark every piece of property you own as yours. Recording the serial numbers and other identifiers during the marking process helps ensure that you can positively identify your property if it is taken and subsequently recovered, or that you can prove ownership if there is some question. Almost any article can be marked in some manner. You should keep an inventory of your personal property in a safe place (definitely not in or with the property) so that in the event of theft or other loss, you have the information needed to make a police report and/or an insurance claim.

All residents are encouraged to purchase Renter's Insurance.