Crime Prevention: Burglary Prevention for Homes

This checklist was designed to help you improve the security and safety for your home.

The first purpose of a home security inspection is to identify features in your home or daily routines of your family, which might make your home an easy target for a burglar.

The security inspection should begin at your front door, and include an inspection of all your doors and windows, locks, lights and landscaping. Each question on the checklist answered “No” indicates a security weakness or hazard, which requires your attention.

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DOORS

  • Are all outside doors in the house of metal or solid wood construction?
  • Are doorframes strong enough and tight enough to prevent forcing or spreading?
  • Are door hinges protected from removal from the outside?
  • Are there windows in any door or within 40 inches of the locks?
  • Are all door locks adequate and in good repair?
  • Are strikes and strike plates adequate and properly installed?
  • Can the locking mechanism be reached through a mail slot, or pet entrance?
  • Is there a screen or storm door with an adequate lock?
  • Are all entrances lighted with at least a 40 watt light?
  • Can front entrances be observed from the street or public area?
  • Does the porch or landscaping offer concealment from view from the street?
  • Are sliding doors secured from being lifted out of its track?
  • Is the “Charley-bar” or key operated auxiliary lock used on sliding glass doors?

ENTRANCES FROM GARAGE AND BASEMENT

  • Are all entrances to the living quarters from a garage or basement of metal or solid wood construction?
  • Does the door from the garage to the living quarters have locks adequate for exterior entrances?
  • Does the door from the basement to the living quarters have an adequate lock operated from the living quarter’s side?

WINDOWS

  • Do all windows have adequate locks in operating condition?
  • Do windows have screens or storm windows that lock from the inside?
  • Do any windows open into areas that may be hazardous to offer special risk to burglary?
  • Do windows that open into hazardous areas have security screens or grills?
  • Are exterior areas of windows free from concealing structure or landscaping?
  • Is the exterior adequately lighted at all window areas?
  • Are trees and shrubbery kept trimmed back from upper floor windows?
  • Are ladders kept where they are not accessible?

BASEMENT DOORS AND WINDOWS

  • Is there a door from the outside to the basement?
  • If so, is that door adequately secure for an exterior door?
  • Is the outside basement entrance lighted by an exterior light of at least 40 watts?
  • Is the outside basement door concealed from the street or neighbors?
  • Are all basement windows adequately secured against entrance?

GARAGE DOORS AND WINDOWS

  • Are automobile garage doors equipped with an adequate locking device?
  • Is the garage door kept closed and locked at all times?
  • Are the garage windows secured adequately for ground floor windows?
  • Is the outside utility entrance to the garage as secure as required for any ground floor entrance?
  • Are tools and ladders kept in the garage?
  • Are all garage doors lighted on the outside by at least a 40 watt light?

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