21 Things a Burglar Won’t Tell You and Other Tips

  1. Of course I look familiar.  I was here just last week cleaning your carpets, painting your shutters, or delivering your new refrigerator.
  2. Hey, thanks for letting me use the bathroom when I was working in your yard last week.  While I was in there, I unlatched the back window to make my return a little easier.
  3. Love those flowers.  That tells me you have taste … & taste means there are nice things inside.
  4. Those yard toys your kids leave out always make me wonder what type of gaming system they have.
  5. Yes, I really do look for newspapers piled up on the driveway.  & I might leave a pizza flyer in your front door to see how long it takes you to remove it.
  6. If it snows while you’re out of town, get a neighbor to create car & foot tracks into the house. Virgin drifts in the driveway are a dead giveaway.
  7. If decorative glass is part of your front entrance, don’t let your alarm company install the control pad where I can see if it’s set.  That makes it too easy.
  8. A good security co. alarms the window over the sink & the windows on the 2nd floor, which often access the master bedroom & your jewelry.  It’s not a bad idea to put motion detectors up there too.
  9. It’s raining, you’re fumbling with your umbrella, & you forget to lock your door – understandable.  But understand this: I don’t take a day off because of bad weather.
  10. I always knock first.  If you answer, I’ll ask for directions somewhere or offer to clean your gutters.  (Don’t take me up on it.)
  11. Do you really think I won’t look in your sock drawer?  I always check dresser drawers, the bedside table, & the medicine cabinet.
  12. Here’s a helpful hint:  I almost never go into kids’ rooms.
  13. You’re right:  I won’t have enough time to break into that safe where you keep your valuables.  But if it’s not bolted down, I’ll take it with me.
  14. Sometimes, I carry a clipboard.  Sometimes, I dress like a lawn guy & carry a rake.  I do my best to never, ever, look like a crook.
  15. The two things I hate most:  loud dogs & nosy neighbors.
  16. I’ll break a window to get in, even if it makes a little noise.  If your neighbor hears one loud sound, he’ll stop what he’s doing & wait to hear it again.  If he doesn’t hear it again, he’ll just go back to what he was doing.  It’s human nature.
  17. I’m not complaining, but why would you pay all that money for a fancy alarm system & leave your house without setting it?
  18. I love looking in your windows.  I’m looking for signs that you’re home, & for flat screen TVs or gaming systems I’d like.  I’ll drive or walk through your neighborhood at night, before you close the blinds,  just to pick my targets.
  19. Avoid announcing your vacation on your Facebook page.  It’s easier than you think to look up your address.
  20. To you, leaving that window open just a crack during the day is a way to let in a little fresh air.  To me, it’s an invitation.
  21. If you don’t answer when I knock, I try the door.  Occasionally, I  hit the jackpot & walk right in.
Sources:  Convicted burglars in North Carolina, Oregon, California,  & Kentucky; security consultant Chris McGoey, who runs http://www.crimedoctor.com & Richard T. Wright, a criminology professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, who interviewed 105 burglars for  his book Burglars on the Job.

Protections for You and Your Home

If you don’t have a gun, here’s a more humane way to wreck someone’s evil plans for you.


A friend who is a receptionist in a church in a high risk area was concerned about someone coming into the office on Monday to rob them when they were counting the collection.  She asked the local police department  about using pepper spray, & they recommended to her that she get a can of wasp spray instead.

The wasp spray, they told her, can shoot up to twenty feet away & is a lot more accurate, while with the pepper spray, they have to get too close to you & could overpower you.  The wasp spray temporarily blinds an attacker until they get to the hospital for an antidote.  She keeps a can on her desk in the office, & it doesn’t attract attention from people like a can of pepper spray would.

She also keeps one nearby at home for home protection.  Thought this was interesting & might be of  use.


If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house just press the panic button for your car.  The alarm will be set off, & the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.  This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator.  Next time you come home for the night & you start to put your keys away, think of this:  It’s a security alarm system that you probably already have & requires no installation.  Test it.   It will go off from most everywhere inside your house & will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain.  It works if you park in your driveway or garage.  If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break into your house, odds are the burglar won’t stick around.

After a few seconds all the neighbors will be looking out their windows

to see who is out there & sure enough the criminal won’t want that.

Remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot.

The alarm can work the same way there.

This is something that should really be shared with everyone.  Maybe it

could save a life or a sexual abuse crime.

Would also be useful for any emergency, such as a heart attack, where

you can’t reach a phone.  My Mom has suggested to my Dad that he carry

his car keys with him in case he falls outside & she doesn’t hear him.

He can activate the car alarm, & then she’ll know there’s a problem.