The advice given here is solely from personal experience and from speaking with other homeowners.
1. LIGHTING One important thing to deter thieves is lighting! I cannot tell you how many videos I have seen where a thief will take off running as soon as a motion light comes on. Most motion lights do require an electrician to wire them to a light switch. There are some available now that are solar powered and recharges and internal battery. These are great to have at each corner of your home and on any garages or buildings on the property.
There have been major advancements over the years with motion flood lights. You can pay a little more and buy LED motion lights that will save you on your power bill, last longer than regular bulbs and provide great lighting!
Another lighting source to look into is outdoor lighting from your local power company. If you are lucky enough to have a power pole with power wires in a location that suits your needs. You can have them install an LED outdoor light for a little over $10 a month. If you need a pole with power in a different location. The monthly fee is substantially higher. I advise you to contact your local power company to discuss prices.
2. MOTION DETECTORS Motion detectors are a great and cheap way to be alerted if someone is on your property. They are called driveway alert systems. They can be purchased from many different retailers from $15 and up. I would advise not to pay more than $20. They can be found at a reasonable price if you do a little searching. These little devices are easy to install and are wireless. The sensor runs off of a 9 volt battery and the receiver that you keep in the house runs off of 4 AA batteries or you can purchase a power adapter separately . They have a high and low sound and are a great way to know if someone is trespassing or if you just have unexpected visitors coming to the house.
3. SECURITY CAMERAS Security cameras are a wonderful thing to have. They come in wired or wireless. They do require some technical know how. The thing with cameras are, you get what you pay for. The market is flooded with cheap security cameras that come with a DVR that records whats going on outside. The problem with cheap cameras is low grade video quality. Although you may be excited when you see the video streaming on your tv or your smartphone for the first time. You will be highly disappointed when you see a much more expensive camera system and the quality of the video. It all comes down to what you can afford. Even if you have to settle with a cheaper system, at least you will have some video evidence of any mischief. This is also very helpful to provide solid evidence of an incident.
Let's say someone walks into your yard while you are away and steals a package off of your front porch. If you have a surveillance camera, you now have a date and time when it was stolen and a very good chance at identifying the criminal.
4. HOME SECURITY SYSTEMS Home security systems are like every other technology on the market. Something new comes out every day.
When searching for home security systems. Find what best fits your budget and read all the reviews you can on the company you choose.
Systems now days can be as basic as door and window sensors and a motion detector for inside the home, all the way to fully automated systems that allow you to control the thermostat in your home, lock the deadbolt while your away, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors and much much more. You can also get a discount on your homeowner's insurance when you install a security system.
1. One small tip can help reinforce your deadbolts even more, cost almost nothing and is simple to do. Replace those wimpy screws with longer screws that will screw straight through the door frame and into the wood stud. I suggest 3 inch screws. A quick search on the internet using the terms, "strengthen deadbolt" will point you in the right direction. You can even purchase stronger striker plates.
2. Inventory lists! This is an absolute must for anyone! It is critically important that you write down Make, Model and Serial numbers of all the items you own. If possible take pictures of the items too. Write down identifying marks. Mark your item with something, whether its an engraver, screwdriver or marker in a area that isn't easy to spot. If the serial number has been removed this mark will help in retrieving your stolen goods.
The reality is if you have an item stolen, how will you PROVE that it is YOUR item if you can't properly identify it? If you have a certain brand push mower stolen. It will not help you one bit if you don't know anything other than the brand. (Unless you have a witness or surveillance.) Guess what? There's thousands of those mowers and they all look the same. It is imperative that you make an inventory list of every item you have if you want to get the thief fully prosecuted.
3. If you are out of town have a neighbor pick up your newspaper and check the mail. A few newspaper lying around will be a good sign to a thief that noone is home.
4. An extra car parked in the yard can often act as a deterrent for thieves.
5. A good loyal barking dog can always be a great deterrent. Not many people want to risk getting bit by a dog even if the dog doesn't bite. They don't know that.
6. Automobile break ins have become a major problem. The majority of the time, thieves only target unlocked vehicles. It makes less noise than breaking into a locked vehicle and allows for them to hit multiple vehicles undetected. Thieves are of course looking for anything valuable. Guns left in the glovebox, electronics, cash and pretty much anything of value. If they find the keys, you can bet you will wake up and your vehicle will be missing.
I highly encourage you to LOCK YOUR VEHICLE'S DOORS! Do not leave the keys in the car and unless you have a vehicle with remote start. Do not leave your car running. I have heard many times where someone was just warming their car up and come outside and the car was gone. Do not leave your vehicle running to run into the convenient store real quick or else you risk your car being stolen real quick.
These thieves lurk around all day looking for an easy target.