Many homeowners feel that crime will never impact their household, however, there are never any guarantees. Houses that are vulnerable to burglary and theft are running the risk of inviting crime. Often by taking very simple steps, a homeowner can raise the level of security at home. Below are some helpful home security tips for homeowners:

  • Never leave clues that you are away on a trip. Have a trusted neighbor collect mail and newspapers while you are away so delivered items do not accumulate. As an added precaution you can submit a Property Check Form to the Andover Township Police Department by calling Police Headquarters at (973) 383-5544 or by going to the Property Check Request page. 
  • Keep all doors and windows closed and securely fastened. An open window or door is an open invitation for burglars. Thieves are also quick to spot weak locks that may easily be forced open. Doors should have deadbolt locks with a 1' throw and reinforced strike plate 3' inch screws. All windows should have window locks.
  • Secure sliding glass doors. Place a metal rod or piece of plywood in the track and install vertical bolts. These will help prevent burglars from forcing the door open and lifting it off the track.
  • Create the illusion that you are home by using timers on lights, radios and TVs. Making your residence appear occupied, even when no one is home; this could deter criminals.
  • Keep the perimeter of your home well lit. Installing low voltage outdoor lighting is a cost-effective way to discourage intruders, as well as highlight a house.
  • Always keep your vehicles locked! This is the best way to prevent your vehicle from being burglarized.  
  • Never leave a message on your telephone answering machine telling people that you are away from home. A message that you will return at a certain time will leave your home vulnerable to burglars.
  • Lock up your home, even if you go out only for a short time. Many burglars just walk in through an unlocked door or window.
  • Change all the locks and tumblers when you move into a new house or if you lose your keys.
  • Before turning your house key over to a professional house cleaner for several hours, make sure the person is honest and reputable as well as hardworking. Check all references thoroughly. If the house cleaner is from a firm, call your local Better Business Bureau to check on the firm's reputation.
  • Instead of keeping a spare key in a mailbox, under the doormat, or on a nail behind the garage, put a key in a 35mm film can and bury it where you can easily find it if you need it.
  • Dogs are good deterrents to burglars. Even a small, noisy dog can be effective. Burglars do not like to have attention drawn to their presence.
  • Always lock the door to an attached garage. Don't rely on your automatic garage door opener for security 
  • Talk to your neighbors about any suspicious people or strange cars you notice lurking about. An alert community is a safe community!



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Andover Township Police Department
134 Newton Sparta Road   |   Newton, New Jersey 07860
Emergency:  911   |   Non-Emergency: (973) 383-5544

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