Halloween Home Security Tips: Taking the Trick Out of Trick-Or-Treating
Halloween is one of the most highly anticipated holidays of the year. It’s the one time where you can be anyone or anything that you want – like a princess, hero, goblin, or ghoul. It’s also a time where there’s plenty of treats and the occasional trick. This is why it’s important to be prepared for whatever tricks may come our way. According to recent statistics, the occurrence of criminal activities (especially burglaries) spike around Halloween night. So, whether your plan is to stay at home and pass out candy to trick-or-treaters, go out for the evening, or host a big party, here are a few ways to ensure your home and family are safe on Halloween 2016.
If you’re Handing out Candy
When handing out candy to trick-or-treaters at home, there are a few things you can do to make sure you and your home are safe and secure.
- Be sure to keep all the windows and doors in your home locked when passing out candy. In fact, it may even be better to pass out candy outside your home. This way, no one can force their way in when you open the door. If you decide to do this, arm your alarm system and remove any hidden spare keys from outside so that only you have access to your home at the end of the evening.
- If you choose to greet trick-or-treaters from inside your home, always look to see who is at the door before opening it. If something appears off, don’t answer. When you do open your door to trick-or-treaters, close the door behind you as you pass out your goods. Remember, keeping the door fully open as you pass out candy allows strangers passing through to sneak a peek inside your home. Should a burglar come back and try to break in, they may know exactly where to go and what to take.
- Make sure your car is always visible to you. It is also best to remove any valuables from it before Halloween night, including any gate or garage door openers you may have. Not every robbery happens inside a house, and burglars may take advantage of trick-or-treaters as a distraction.
- Never let your guard down. Keep your phone fully charged at all times so that if you see anything (or anyone) suspicious, you can call for help. It also provides added security to have someone with you when passing out candy. After all, there is both strength and safety in numbers.
If you’re Going Out for the Night
Not every homeowner stays in on Halloween night to pass out candy. Most parents or guardians accompany their children and their friends for a night of trick-or-treating. If you leave your home to do this, or to attend other Halloween festivities, there are several ways to ward off any would-be thieves in your absence.
- Just as you would on any other night out, make sure every door and window is locked and the security system is armed. Forgetting to do this is surprisingly easy on Halloween with all of the hustle-and-bustle of excited children to distract you. It may also help to inform your neighbors that you will be out and to have them contact you if they spot any suspicious activity outside of your home while you’re away.
- Keep your house well-lit. Leaving lights on inside gives the illusion that someone is home, discouraging burglars from trying to break in. Additionally, keeping major entrances lit will ensure added home security since it would be more difficult for burglars to break in without being seen.
- Never put a dish of candy out for trick-or-treaters while you’re away. This is one of the clearest indications that a house is empty, and anyone looking to break in will likely take advantage. Don’t worry; the trick-or-treaters won’t be too disappointed at the lack of candy since there are many other houses that they can visit.
- Putting up a sign on your front door informing trick-or-treating parties that your home doesn’t have candy this year is another way to avoid unwanted visits from would-be burglars. Doing this ensures that trick-or-treaters won’t knock on your door, revealing to onlookers that no one is home due to a lack of response.
If you’re Hosting a Party
If you don’t feel comfortable going out or opening your home to strangers by passing out candy, you may opt to have a Halloween party at home instead. Inviting friends over to celebrate with you is one way to keep the night both spooky and safe. However, there are still precautions you can take to keep your home secure even when you have people with you.
- When decorating for your party, be sure that any signs that came with your security system are not obscured in any way. Keeping them visible will indicate that your home is thoroughly protected and will dissuade anyone from trying to break in at the risk of triggering the alarms you have set in place.
- Always answer the door yourself and turn away anyone you don’t recognize. This will prevent any strangers from entering and blending into your party guests, which is a popular tactic for thieves who are out scoping possible hits. Moreover, when a guest is ready to leave, be sure to escort them to the door yourself. This will not only see them out safely, but will also prevent anyone from trying to sneak in past the departing guest.
- Keep all the doors locked so that no one can enter without your permission. If you or any of your guests want to open a window for some fresh autumn air, be sure it’s in a room that you’re in so that no one can climb in from outside without being noticed.
There’s more to preparing for Halloween this year than just putting up decorations. By staying in groups, locking up, arming your home’s security system, and following the other suggested precautions on this list, you can enjoy Halloween’s treats without worrying about its tricks. If you have any questions or are interested in updating your home security system in time for Halloween, please call South Shore Locksmith at (561) 531-2619.