The Best Ways to Prevent Your Car Being Stolen at Home
According to data collected by the National Motor Vehicle Theft Reduction Council (NMVTRC) – a whopping 47,803 motor vehicles were stolen Australia wide in the last year alone, with 5,365 of those residing in WA. That equates to just under 132 vehicles stolen PER DAY – or a car stolen every 11 minutes! Holy Shed!!!
So, if you’re like me and just had a quick squiz out the window to make sure the car is still there after reading that – then you are not alone, and it may be time to do something about it.
You may think to yourself “Nah mate – won’t happen to me”, but why risk losing something you have put your hard-earned money into. Your car is your livelihood – Your A to B – Your pride and joy – so why make it easy for some opportunistic lowlife to steal your baby.
Having a secure attached-garage, or even better, a free-standing garage shed, is a massive step in the right direction for keeping your car safe from potential thieves. Although a secure garage alone is not the only answer. Without a secure method for storing your keys and security measures in place to reinforce your garage you are at a much higher risk of having unwanted guests snooping around your property.
So, follow on below for expert tips on how to keep both your car and keys secure in your home.
Always Lock Your Garage
Sounds simple? Maybe, but your attached-garage door is essentially a second front door to your home. These days most people have a garage door remote for opening and closing their garage door. But if you are one of the thousands that don’t, then keeping it locked should become second nature. By investing in an up-to-date garage door remote you can add an extra layer of protection to your garage and stop thieves from picking the lock (or just brute forcing it) and breaking in.
If your garage is free standing, and not attached to your home, then keeping it secure is even more important—you’re pretty unlikely to hear someone breaking in if it’s not attached to your home. But that said, as long as you remember to lock it and don’t leave the keys lying around, a free standing option is pretty secure.
If you are someone that works away, frequently holidays, lives alone, or prefers peace of mind then consider getting a floor anchor for your garage door. Your garage will be more secure and add another barrier for thieves to contend with. With a floor anchor, you can literally padlock the door to the slab. Put it on the inside of the door, as long as you’ve got a side entry, and there’s no getting it open from the outside.
Side Door Entry
Strong garage security should not be limited to just the garage door. The door that connects your home to your garage is equally as important. It should be strong and secure like the front door of your home with an adequate lock making it difficult to penetrate. Reinforcing the door with a deadbolt and/or reinforced strike plate will add another layer of security and stop burglars from being able to jimmy the door open or kick it in altogether. This door should always remain locked whether you are in your home or not.
With a detached garage, having a solid deadbolt on the side entry is a pretty good idea. They’re relatively affordable and straightforward to install, and prevent pretty much any method of forced entry short of taking an angle grinder and cutting a man-sized hole in the door. A sensor light above the door is also essential.
Shed Some Light
Darkness is a burglar’s best friend. They rely on the dark shadows around your garage to hide themselves from onlookers as they go about breaking into your home. Luckily there is an easy solution. We recommend installing a motion activated light that lights up both your garage door and your driveway at any sign of movement. Burglar’s will think twice about attempting a night break in at your place without the cover of darkness. Equally as important is a bright light inside the garage that activates when the garage door is opened. This adds another layer of risk for the thief and will help deter them from targeting your home. As a bonus, no more fumbling around looking for the light switch in the dark!
Cover Up Windows
If your garage has windows, we recommend getting them covered, or having some kind of shutter. Burglars will sneak a peek inside your garage window to see if it’s worthwhile targeting your home. So, to minimise the risk of your home being targeted look to invest in an obscure or frosted glass panel to reduce visibility or if money is tight, cover them up with some cardboard. The aim is to obscure visibility from the outside and make thieves think twice about breaking in. If they can’t see your tools or toys in your garage, they will be less motivated to break in.
Installing further security measures around your home and garage can prompt potential thieves to think twice before entering your home. Further security options include:
- Installing security cameras – Strategically placed around ground-floor doors or windows and the main entryway to your backyard and garage.
- Motion sensors and floodlights to shed further light around your garage and backyard
- Warning signs to advise potential thieves of security systems in place and the added risks they present when entering your property.
- Anti-theft alarm system in case another key is used, or the car thief attempts to hotwire your car. If custom installed by a professional, it shouldn’t be as easy for most thieves to disarm.
- Steering wheel lock as an added layer of protection for your vehicle.
Keep Your Keys Safe
NMVTRC statistics show that 70% of cars stolen are with their own keys. In fact, often the homeowner is present in their home while offenders take advantage of unlocked doors and windows. Scary thought isn’t it. So, to help minimise the chances of your keys being stolen you should always follow the Pop – Lock – Stop method.
Pop your car keys in a safe and secure location away from doors and windows. You know your house better than anyone else so find a place that’s accessible to you but not as obvious to others. Leaving your keys on the kitchen bench, hanging on a key hook, or lying around in plain sight is a recipe for disaster. I mean why make it easy for them?!
Lock all doors and windows especially when you are not in the room. Opportunists can be in and out of your home in a matter of seconds so by practising good locking habits you make it a lot harder for perpetrators to penetrate your home security.
Stop sneak theft.
Since most theft crimes are opportunistic rather than well planned out bank robberies like you see in the movies, by removing the temptation for thieves to steal your keys, you are significantly less likely to be targeted.
Other tips for storing your keys include:
- Storing your keys in a safe
- Storing your keys in a less obvious location somewhere within the house
- Take your keys with you when leaving your home
- Never leave your spare house key in your car or somewhere visible to onlookers
- If your car is particularly collectible and you don’t drive it often, keep the keys separate from the rest of your keys
- Don’t label your keys with information a thief could use like your name or address.
Bonus Tip: Ask ya Best Mate to Stand Guard!
A dog is a great way to keep your property secure, and they’re great company to boot. When it comes to keeping people away from your shed, having a furry friend standing guard 24/7 is pretty hard to beat. Sure, even dogs have gotta sleep but they’re a lot better at hearing someone trying to sneak in than a person is.
While we’re big fans of good dogs, unfortunately pooch installation is not something we’re across. Maybe try your local RSPCA!
Protect Your Vehicle Today
Having a locked garage, securely stored keys, and further security measures in place to protect your home is undoubtedly the best way to keep your car secure from potential thieves. Over 50% of all cars stolen are taken from the home with around 1 in 120 Australians falling victim to car criminals each year. So, to avoid becoming another statistic and forking out thousands in insurance excesses, look to invest in a safe and secure garage and security system for your home.
At Spinifex Sheds we build fully customizable sheds and secure, free standing garages engineered for your needs. So, for help securing your vehicle and belongings today give us a call at Spinifex Sheds on (08) 9390 4662 or Apply for a Quote Now!
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