Burglars are savvy criminals that often target homes or businesses that they’ve scouted for some time. Though many burglaries are crimes of opportunity—a door or window was left open—many are methodical.

Understanding how to protect homes is important to protect your family, but also your property. According to the FBI, over 12 billion worth of property was stolen in 2015 alone. Knowing where to place home security equipment and how burglars strike is vital to home security. 

Entryways and Exits

According the Washington Post, 34% of burglars use the front door, and 22% use the backdoor when committing their crimes. These two locations combined mean that entry and exit points for a home are the most vulnerable places for a break-in. These are the first areas that should be secured when you’re protecting a home.

Cameras aimed at both the front and back doors should have clear and unhindered views of doorways, and they should be placed high above doors so no one can tamper with them. Just make sure not to place cameras too high or you’ll lose your ability to clearly identify people. 

Both of these areas should be equipped with motion sensing lights, and clean of all debris, mail, or build-up of any other home products. Bushes and other foliage should be trimmed and well-kept so burglars don’t have any means of hiding while they’re attempting their crimes.

Pro-tip: If burglars gain access to the home, a trick to capture their faces on camera is to place a television, monitor, or attention grabbing item near the entrance of a door. This ensures that their eyes will meet the item and give the camera a plain view of their face.

Rear Windows

The second best location is to place cameras near rear windows. These windows are the most likely to be neglected by homeowners, but also the most likely for a burglar to take advantage of. These windows are farthest from the street, might be in a backyard or other area that provides some sort of coverage, and likely hidden from neighbors.

The same measure as exits and entryways should be taken with rear windows. Place cameras high enough not to be tampered with, but still capable of capturing an intruder. Remember basic protection essentials, like never leaving a window unlocked or open. Even if you’re only going to be gone for a few moments, you don’t want to provide an advantageous situation for a burglar.

Locations May Vary By Needs

The locations where you should place home security cameras may vary by needs, including: the size of your home, number of doors and windows, children and other family members present, and the amount of resources you are willing to invest in.

The following are common and recommended places to place security cameras:

  • Sheds, guest houses, and outdoor storage spaces
  • Driveways in the front and back of the home
  • Backyards and front yards
  • Basement stairs
  • Nursery rooms

Regardless of the type of home you live in, where it’s located, or any other variable, it’s important to remember common security procedures, like:

  • Install door and window sensors
  • Always lock doors and windows
  • Proper lighting, including motion sensor lights
  • Advertise home security on the outside of your property
  • Never leave garage door openers in cars parked outside
  • Only place equipment that is waterproof with night vision outdoors

With the right game plan you’ll not only prevent a burglary, but catch thieves in the act if one does try to tamper with your home.