baseball bat for defense
In an emergency, household items may be used as defensive weapons

Unfortunately, even the best home security can’t guarantee 100% protection, 100% of the time. That’s why redundancy measures are so important: like an onion, the more layers of security you utilize, the more likely you are to make an intruder weep. Beyond discouraging home invaders and implementing burglar deterrents, there are several small things you can do to protect your home and family from the threat of a break-in.

7 Tips to Defend Your Family & Home Against Burglars

1. Lock the Doors
Four out of every ten burglars enter through an unlocked door or window. Start with the most basic defense: a good offense. Lock up your doors and windows at night, every night. If you enjoy the evening breeze, consider investing in special windows that open a small amount – not enough for a burglar to slip through – and lock into place, thereby delivering both security and fresh air.

2. Reinforce Bedroom Doors
Many interior doors are made from inferior materials. Replace all bedroom doors with solid wood versions complete with decent locks. (You don’t have to deadbolt your bedroom door.) In the event of a break-in, solid wood doors can give you a few extra minutes to call the police or grab a weapon.

3. Lock Up Your Guns
If you own guns, make sure they are always kept in a locking cabinet. Experienced burglars know all the normal hiding spots – even the ones you think they won’t know – and won’t hesitate to use your own gun against you. Keep your ammo in a separate, locking case or area, so that even if a burglar does find a gun, it won’t be loaded.

4. Get to the Shooting Range
Speaking of guns, if you own one, get trained on it; it is dangerous to own a weapon that you don’t know how to use. You should know how to load, fire, and disengage your firearm without a second thought; in the heat of the moment, adrenaline and fear can cloud your thought processes. Run a few drills to practice loading your firearm in the dark, in the middle of the night, from a dead sleep – the most challenging of circumstances.

5. Install Motion Sensors
Even if you don’t have a home security system, you can still install a motion sensor or other type of alarm. Self-installed systems are inexpensive and while they don’t sound the alarm to police or a home security company, they will let you know if an intruder has breached a window, external door, or any other area that you have protected.

6. Know How to Defend Yourself
You don’t have to own a gun to defend yourself. Many household items can be used in an emergency, for example:

  • Baseball Bat / Cane / 2×4: If you have good aim, a baseball bat or similar can be used to protect your person or even knock an intruder unconscious.
  • Perfume / Aerosol Anything: May be used as makeshift mace.
  • Telephone / Hole Punch / Anything Heavy: Heavy, hard-to-break objects can be used to deliver a harder punch.
  • Fruit Juice / Lemonade: Acidic juices can be thrown or spat to temporarily blind an intruder.

7. Charge Your Cell Phone
If an intruder cuts your phone line, you’ll need to have a charged cell phone close by.