Halloween home safety tips are probably not the first thing on your mind this time of year. However, they should be. ADT reports that Halloween night crimes take a pretty big jump. Vandalism raises by 19%. Car theft increases by 5%. Home theft insurance claims goes up by 60% – that’s a big leap from the rest of the year! In fact, Halloween night is an insurance company’s payday, because October 31st boasts more claims than any other day of the year.
Are you ready to rethink halloween home safety tips now? Halloween is a spooky, exciting, fun and mischievous night. Sweet little trick-or-treaters come to visit, candy is passed around, and the thrill of being frightened is in the air. But there are some ominous figures lurking behind the fun. Halloween is also a great night for criminals to take advantage. The scene is set for them, and unsuspecting neighborhoods are targeted.
Here are some Halloween home safety tips that will not only protect you and your home, but the visitors that come knocking on your door:
Pets: Even if you have friendly pets, not all children will be comfortable with them. Respect your one night visitors by keeping your pets away from the front door. That’s helpful to your pets, as well. The ASPCA notes that constant door bell ringing might frighten little Fido and Mrs. Whiskers, causing them to run out the front door. Keeping them in a back room for one night will keep them and your door knocking guests safer and more comfortable.
Trick-or-treaters: Clear your pathways, walkways, porch and front yard of debris or items that little feet could trip on. Light it up, so that the risk is lower of an accident. Use LED lights (or even your Christmas string lights!) to line your walkway and porch. Not only does this help the little gouls and goblins looking for candy, it lets would be burglars know someone is home.
Jack-o-lanterns: Make sure that candle in your scary pumpkins, doesn’t become a fire hazard! Set the tea light or candle in a tuna can so if it tips over, you don’t have a potential fire on your hands. You can also opt out of the real fire and use LED lights, glow sticks or fake candle lights. This is also a great time to check on those smoke detectors and make sure they are working properly.
Valuables: Remember, if you’re celebrating and going all out with decorations, your home will be lit up much more than normal. That means your valuables could have a spotlight right on them, unintentionally. Hide valuables in other rooms or closets. Park your car in the garage, if possible. Take a look around before dark. Is there anything you see that might entice a potential burglar?
Back doors: Don’t let your guard down. Just because you have a well lit home with constant interaction from little folks begging for candy, doesn’t mean you’re safe from home invasions. Many people assume that if they are at their front door all night – they aren’t at risk. However, this is the perfect place for you to be, should a thief want to raid your home through the back door. Lock every window and door in your home. You’ll feel safer at the front door, knowing no one can get in through the back.
Someone’s Home: Even if you’re out with your little ones trick-or-treating, you’ll want to be sure your home doesn’t appear to be empty. Leave lights on, turn on music or the TV and don’t let it look as though you left for the night. Placing a sign on the door that says, “Sorry, no candy” will make it seem as though you are still home, but can’t accommodate trick-or-treaters. Should a criminal try to ring the doorbell to test the occupancy of the home – it would make sense that you wouldn’t answer.
Driveway: Consider handing out candy from the driveway or garage this year. You’ll have a much clearer view of the neighborhood and what’s going on outside. You’ll also be able to keep eyes on your lawn and walkways, making sure no child comes across any harm. Again, you’ll want to be sure you’ve locked all doors and windows to your home. Should a burglar see that you are occupied at the front of the home, they may take that opportunity. Every 30 minutes, take a stroll through the house to check locks.
Candy: Don’t leave a bowl of candy on your doorstep. Although this seems like an easy way to appease everyone, you’re creating more problems. First, as it becomes known that loads of candy are sitting on your porch, you’re inviting more children to linger and hang out on your property. When children get together, antics are easily started. It also attracts more than children – animals love candy! Plus, leaving the bowl shows thieves that you probably aren’t home. This gives them an excuse to snoop around your home and potentially try to get inside.
Be aware and smart this year with some simple Halloween home safety tips that every homeowner can do. Keep your home safe and secure, all while enjoying this fun, spooky night!
All of us at Fixd Repair hope you have a safe and happy Halloween!