AUSTIN, Texas (NEXSTAR) — Gift givers aren’t the only ones window shopping this holiday season. Thieves are out and about, as they tend to be this time of year, and police in Austin, Texas have a few tips on how to keep your home and property safe:
Keeping your vehicle safe.
It is important to never leave your vehicle running and unattended. Even if you are only going to be gone for a second. A second is all a thief needs to steal your vehicle if it is idling. Roll up your windows, turn off your car, lock the doors and take your keys. Better to be safe than sorry!
This next tip may seem like a no-brainer, but it always merits repeating. Never leave your valuables in your car. High priced electronics or other goodies left in your car can be like a green light for some grinchy ne’er-do-wells. Police advise that you take your belongings out of your car, or place them in your trunk and out of sight.
If you do find yourself frequently leaving your valuables in your car, then it is a good idea to record serial numbers. If something expensive like a laptop gets stolen from your vehicle, having its serial number on hand makes it significantly easier to retrieve it if it ever gets recovered by police.
Keeping your home safe.
First and foremost, always remember to lock your doors and windows. If you have an alarm, always remember to set it when leaving the house. A secure home is a safe home.
If you plan on traveling, it is a good idea to ask a trusted neighbor, friend, or family member to collect your mail. Also, ask package couriers not to leave any boxes unattended on your doorstep.
Automatic timers for indoor and outdoor lights is a good precaution to take to deter would-be burglars. You can also take an extra step and leave a radio or television on so the house looks and sounds occupied.
Last but not least, curtains. Make sure to always close curtains, drapes, or blinds when leaving your home. Police advice playing a game with your family. Go outside and look through your windows. If you can see the gifts under the tree, then so could thieves.