You’re sound asleep when all of a sudden a loud noise jars you awake. You sit up and hear people rustling around down stairs. Your heart immediately starts pounding, a sense of panic rushes through your body and you have only seconds to react.
According to the F.B.I. one in five homes in America will experience a home invasion or break-in. Do you have the necessary skills, training, and weapons to protect yourself and your home? Can you calm yourself down fast enough to react in a way that will ensure a favorable outcome?
Prevent yourself and your family from becoming the next victim
Prevention – Prevention is the number one thing you can do to survive a home invasion. The harder you make it for a criminal to enter your home, the more likely it is that they will move on to an easier target.
- Lock your Doors – It may sound like common sense, but most break-ins occur when people fail to take basic precautions. Take a minute and do a quick run through before you leave your house, and before you go to bed at night.
- Think like a thief. Walk around your house looking for weak points. Are there areas that make it easy for a criminal to hide? Are there windows or doors that have been left open, or are vulnerable to entry?
- Break into your own home – Putting yourself in to the criminals mind can help you expose any weaknesses that you may have overlooked. Scope out your own home and see if you can find a way to break in.
- Secure your Windows – Windows are one of the weakest security points in most houses. To better secure your home make sure all window glass is double-pained laminated glass. As an added security measure you can apply Security Window Film that will make your glass shatterproof.
- Lighting – Lighting is an important aspect of home security that’s often overlooked. Criminals rely on stealth and surprise in order to commit their crimes. If you can make both of those harder on them, they are less likely to see your home as an easy target.
- Secure your Garage Door: The second the garage door closes, most home owners mistakenly assume their home is secure. Unfortunately, garage doors are often one of the first place criminals will check because of how easy they are to penetrate.
Situational Awareness – Being aware of your surroundings is extremely important.
- A Quick Look. Before entering your home or garage, do a quick inspection of your surroundings. Does everything look normal? Does it look the same as when you left?
- Keep an eye on who is in your neighborhood. Make sure you know what people and vehicles are in your neighborhood, and be on the lookout when a strange face starts lurking around.
- Change it up. Criminals are experts when it comes to situational awareness. They often scout out their targets weeks in advance. They watch for patterns and routines so they can strike when you are most vulnerable. Try not to live by a strict schedule, and make sure you change up when you arrive at home and when you leave for work.
Weapons and Training – In a life or death situation, having the right equipment and training can mean the difference between life and death. But having a gun doesn’t necessarily guarantee your safety.
Don’t get me wrong here, I 100% believe that having a gun and knowing how to use it is probably the most important thing you can do to prevent becoming a victim. But please notice the part, where I mentioned “knowing how to use it.”
Having a gun is important but even more important is:
- Knowing what type of gun to choose for home defense.
- Knowing how to use it in a home defense situation.
- Constantly training in order to be effective when the time comes to use it.
- Making sure that everyone in your house knows what to do during a home invasion.
We train in the hopes of never having to use our skills in a real world situation. But should an unfortunate event happen, that calls us in to action, our training is the one thing that will likely determine the outcome.
I can tell you from firsthand experience that most of these crimes can be prevented by just being aware of your vulnerabilities. Like you said think like a thief!
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Thanks for the reminder! Even though we are outside of “town” it is still too close for my peace of mind…especially when I had to call the police as I watched a few idiots attempt a daytime break-in of my neighbor’s house. We have a poorly insulated upstairs, so the kids get the bedrooms on the first floor. I guarantee the 1st level windows are locked tight, and a loud-mouthed dog sleeps in each of the bedrooms with the kids, but it still worries me to no end that we might be the next on the street to be broken into. Diligence, folks! Take NOTHING at face value and BE AWARE!!
You left out one crucial prep: harden your doors. Most home invasions start with a door being kicked in. Get a 3-4 foot long strike plate and secure it to the jamb with 3-4 inch screws. replace the hinge screws (door and jamb) with the longer ones. This is more effective than buying a steel door!
Your comment is 100% correct. Thieves broke into my house by kicking in the front door while I was at work. Since then I have added a 5 foot strike plat (that’s right – 5 feet). It’s next to impossible to break down those doors now.
Most home invasions start with a door being kicked in. Get a 3-4 foot long strike plate and secure it to the jamb with 3-4 inch screws. replace the hinge screws (door and jamb) with the longer ones. This is more effective than buying a steel door!
Big Jammer Door Brace is the best thing to put in front of your door, If you have enough ass and strength to kick the door off it’s hinges, because that’s what you would have to do…I promise not blow your head off…only so we can call your MOMMA and tell her you want be coming home for dinner
I still insist that dogs are one of the best and most under rated theft prevention “systems” in the prepping world. See how many people even want to step onto the driveway with two pits (in my case pitbulls, most large breeds will do) staring them down. I was born into an anti-gun house hold, and go legitimate reasons, but I can tell you right now this still no house you want to be in unwanted.
Exactly as you say Youngprepper! I’ve got coonhounds which means they are more likely to want to go for a ride with you than bite you, but with bays that are loud enough to shake the ground, people think twice about coming to my door! And at 70+ pounds, they are big enough you are NOT going to kick them out of the way, so the size alone is intimidating to most, even experienced “dog-people.”
There ya go! That’s exactly what I’m talking about. Thor is a lil over 100lb these days and Roxy is a around 65lb, my vicious lookin’ cuddle bugs. Big, loud bark, gnarly snarl. and I don’t have to worry about being arrest walking down the street with’em, or for having them in the back of my truck!
There are a lot of cops on here young guy.more then u think
Don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade, but, if the would be home invasion people know the dogs are there, those dogs will be the first things “taken out.” .22 caps or similar rounds make little or no noise and, at close range, are very effective. I’ve heard of felons taking on police dogs and winning. There is also a spray that can be used to neutralize a dog. I offer no alternatives other than think of having backup measures, meaning do not rely soley on the dogs as a deterrent. Have a backup. My background is in threat analysis so it’s not just opinion, but fact.
My point isn’t that I expect my dogs to handle the “bad guys” for me.
My point is that living in a rural area as I do, my biggest threat for home invasion is the stray robber, whom is likely detered by pitbulls roaming the perimeter.
We’re not some big target, I’m not going to spend my few resources on preparing for some methodical terrorists after the handful of valuable items in this house.
But I appreciate your point of view, and I assure you my dogs are not my only form of defense, but rather my best form of general prevention.
old soldier, you aren’t raining on anyone’s parade :) I’m well aware that if someone is bent on causing problems, my dogs won’t stop them. What I count on them for is a few more seconds warning…just enough time to make sure I have my sidearm FIRMLY in hand. Realistically, these hounds are even more dependant on me than my kids, no opposable thumbs and all… but they do have good ears and big mouths!
motion detecting floods, barking dogs, wireless driveway patrol alarm, reinforced door frame and hinges will either prevent or delay a home intrusion.
the term home invasion makes me think that they are bringing weapons with them, not just a pillow case.
be ready to fight fire with fire.
a home security system expert will tell you that the sign in the yard that advertises that the home is protected does 90% of the job.
I am with you on that. 2 Motion lights in the driveway and 2 in the back yard. 2 dogs at 100lbs each. Alarm system with sign. A criminal defense lawyer once told me if they/robbers hear a dog they will crack the door open and wait for the pooch to come running and pop him from behind the door. I told him that works for me; between the alarm and the gunshot I will be up and waiting for them. It is crude to say, but dogs are expendable when your family is on the line. My dogs are there to give me time to get to my gun. Dogs aren’t bulletproof, I don’t have any fantasies about them fighting off multiple armed robbers. I just need them to slow them down for a couple seconds.
Agreed on hardening your exterior doors as well as the canines. While we have an alarm system, our two large GSDs, never go off “by accident” and you might get passed one, but never passed the two. If you should the residents are armed and have nasty dispositions about intruders.
Reinforce your bedroom doors. This will give you plenty of time to pick a course of defense, or offense.
agree with the role of the dogs, my preference is german shepherds and i tell ppl that the dog is the door greeter while i get the welcoming commitee out of the holster
Heh. I like it!
Having been in security for 20+ years, I agree the dog is a great deterrent, but have a back up plan. I also security that has battery back up as well as solar motion detector. You can also hook up 110 outlet in light socket that will activate radio or other form of warning. I have 3 English Mastiff with combined weight of around 525 lbs. Pretty intimidating. Also know the safest place in your home should you have an intruder is on the floor in the far blind corner of a room. As they open the door you see them, they won’t see you in time. Also work your plans ahead of time and at least monthly. 12 mil window film secured into frame with flat bar on at least two sides of the window is also a great security feature. Have an exit plan, a in-house hide-out. False wall or something. Could go on, hope this tid bit helps.
I’m sure your jewelry and TVs aren’t worth the trouble for a thief if he sees any dogs or security. The thief will just move on to an easier target. Unless he knows there is something in the house worth the the extra effort.
In south america, most homes have an iron ‘rape gate’ in between the bedroom section of the house and the rest of the house. It closes and locks at night. It can only be opened from the bedroom side.
Six inches from the edge of the door and six inches away from the door drill a 3/8″ 6″ deep hole on the ground and drop a 3/8″ rod in the the hole at night, and even in day time, with this set up you can open the door for those 6″ to see who is there.
At night this set up will give you plenty of time to get ready for who ever is trying to break in.
For a wooden door install a 6X6″ metal plate on the spot where the the door hits the rod.
“If you don’t hold it, you don’t own it”… Ponce
There is a weapon within reach in every room in my house. I also have motion detector security lights, glass breaks in every room, and a great watch dog, and an AK next to the bed. My wife has her nine-shot 22 with stinger hollowpoint ammo. We drill constantly for home invasion. Some people may think we are paranoid, but I’m a Nam vet and a survivor, and I would rather be prepared than dead.
My place looks like I have nothing worth stealing. Wait a second. I don’t have anything worth stealing. Problem solved.
Hello! I am an almost teenager, and I am prepping. The problem is, I have a limited amount of money and resources and such. My Dad doesnt believe in it, and my mom doesnt have time. My friends and I are making a plan to meet up after we have to leave the house and get resources and what not. Any suggestions?
At your age it would be very hard to buy weapons such as firearms. In addition, it may be near impossible to procure an airgun at your age(you said “almost teenager” so I’m guessing ~12) depending on your state’s laws and where you live. The best bet to procure weapons is to try to convince your father to buy a knife(sheath or folding) for you due to your age. However, if he is more supportive, you can try to convince him to buy you a airgun(not airsoft). If you had an older sibling that was supportive, you could go to him or her for help procuring weapons. Your best bet for strategy would be a more passive approach where you would buy water filters, fire starters(it would be hard to buy lighters due to your age), cordage for snares and other things, a basic first aid kit and dried or canned food. Sorry for the length and if my response is off topic.
also, you can buy sling shots and use nuts(the metal hexagonal things) as ammo.
Ah the limited resources…it doesn’t stop when you’re an adult either (ask the rest of the folks here). If you’re trading prepping basics for weapons don’t be so quick to do that. Keep the press on with the basics. As far as weapons goes I’d love to tell you how to acquire a firearm but my reasoning won’t allow it. I grew up in a non-gun house. Keeping with chores and high grades eventually won over a total anti gun mother who allowed me to obtain a .22 rifle at 14 of which I had to pay for. Followed by training at the local gun range from a former Marine Corp drill instructor who thought I had enlisted and treated me as such when handling “my weapon”. If you are dead set on prepping then continue. Aquire the items you need legally otherwise what’s the point. I like the idea of the sling shot pocket rocket Jim suggested and even more the air rifle. You’d be surprised how effective they can be.
I living out in the country and this is why I have 4 Rottweilers. Although they are loving dogs. I do believe that they would do their job.
Hardened door frames, security film on windows, lots of motion lights, alarm and signs, 4 big mastiff’s, security cameras and a good TL 30 T6 safe, If they get past all that then I hope they are bullet proof and if they are they can have it.