Home Safety Tips for the Holidays

The holidays are an exciting time of year.  With busy schedules and family visits, it’s easy to forget the basic safety tips that keep our homes safe from criminals who are looking for an opportunity to strike. The South Pasadena Police would like to remind you to:

  • Keep all doors and windows locked.  Lock gates, garages and sheds after each use.
  • Have several timers attached to lights in various locations throughout the interior of your house. One timer can be programmed to turn one light on and off several times during the evening. Several timers performing the same function can give a very “lived-in” look to a home. This same practice with home timers can be utilized with TV’s and radios, giving an added sound element to the  “lived-in” look.
  • Stop mail and newspaper delivery, or have neighbors pick up anything left at the home.
  • Arrange to have the lawn cut and the bushes trimmed.
  • Double check second floor windows.
  • Ask neighbors to watch your home and report any suspicious activities. Leave your itinerary with a neighbor so you can be contacted in an emergency.
  • Activate your burglar alarm and notify your alarm company that you will be away. Then if an alarm occurs when you are away the company will not call your home first to verify the alarm; it will notify the police directly. Also provide the alarm company with an up-to-date list of persons to contact about the alarm and the need to secure your home after a burglary.
  • Notify the South Pasadena Police and request “Vacation Patrol Checks” for your home while you are away.
  • Disconnect your electric garage door opener and padlock the door, preferably on the inside.
  • Install additional locking devices on all sliding glass doors and windows.  Install locks on gates, garages, sheds, etcetera.
  • Don’t leave keys in mailboxes or planters, under doormats or in other obvious hiding spots.
  • Learn to recognize who belongs in your neighborhood. Know who is at your door before opening it.
  • Ask for photo identification before letting in anyone you don’t know.
  • Never say you aren’t home on your answering machine message.
  • Keep valuable papers, stocks, bonds, expensive jewelry, coin collections, etcetera in a bank deposit box or safe that is well-hidden and bolted securely to the structure.

Lastly, do not use social media to advertise, announce, or post photographs that show you are away from home. Parents should monitor their children’s social media posts to ensure they are not giving away your family is on vacation.  In addition, do not post photographs of valuables left inside your home.