There’s no way around it. The United States has one of the highest rates of home burglary in the world. A home is broken into every 7 minutes, with the majority of burglars carrying some sort of weapon. Part of the reason home invasions happen with such regularity is that most Americans do not adequately protect their homes. Approximately 17% of Americans have adequate home security, and studies have shown that simply by installing cameras in an area, home invasion rates dropped.

Here’s everything you need to know about America’s home invasion statistics and prevention.

Home Invasion vs. Home Burglary

You’ll have heard two terms used in regards to this crime, which seem interchangeable. Home invasion and home burglary. Actually, there is a difference. Home invasion is more specific – referring to a break in when significant force is used. We’re not going to split hairs though, and will use the term home burglary.

Which States have it worst?

Some States have significantly worse rates of home burglary than others.

● New Mexico leads the pack, with 1,046 burglaries per 100,000 residents.

● Arkansas is better off, but comes in at 2nd with 835.7 burglaries per 100,000 residents.

● Compare this to New York, which comes in last, with only 257.2 burglaries per 100,000 residents.

What can you do to prevent burglary?

Even if you live in a State with high burglary rates, there are steps you can take to prevent it from happening to you. As we mentioned, only 17% of Americans adequately protect their homes. If you’re among that 17%, burglars will almost certainly not target you, unless they have a really good reason to (you own a world-famous diamond with millions of dollars, or similar movie heist situations).

Protecting your home is not that expensive, and nowadays it is not difficult either. Smart home security, for example, makes controlling your home possible from wherever you are. This makes it much safer, as burglars mostly go for homes that are empty and unmonitored.

Take the following steps to prevent home burglary:

● Install surveillance cameras: these will trigger alerts that go straight to your smartphone, so you can be aware if someone is trying to enter your home.

● Use motion sensors: yes, there’ll be false alarms. But those false alarms are worth it, for the time a burglar does try to get inside.

● Send doorbell to phone: an easy way for burglars to determine whether anyone is home is to ring the doorbell. By sending camera surveillance and the call itself to your phone, you can act as if you’re there even when you’re not.

Burglars are smart

Unfortunately, home invasion security often relies on an assumption that the people trying to enter your home are idiots. Burglars are wise to all the old tactics, and can find ways around them. By simply plugging the holes and upgrading your security so that it cannot be easily bypassed, your home will be safer than most others on the street.

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