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View Full Version : Would a porch light attract or deter a burglar?


serwachic
05-25-2010, 02:38 PM
Apparently we've had a string of robberies (and one stabbing) on our road, which is very, very unusual. One of the attempted robberies was the house right next door to us, but apparently the guys freaked out when they saw that someone was home and ran. I'm so not the paranoid type and leave my doors/windows open and unlocked most of the time. The burglaries are happening during the day (when DS and I would most often be home alone), so hubby is looking into an alarm system and I'm being more careful about having everything locked and closed up. I fully recognize that at seven months pregnant with a toddler, I'm likely an easy target.

But that got me to thinking about what we would do if someone tried to break in at night. Our house is on a well traveled road, so I wonder if leaving our porch light on all night would make someone feel like they'd be more likely to be seen? Or would it be like a spotlight saying, "hey! rob us!"

So not that any of you have any experience casing out housing or anything like that, but what do you think?

miau
05-25-2010, 02:40 PM
I vote in favor of 'deter'.

It makes them more visible and it makes it harder to hide in the shadows.

serwachic
05-25-2010, 02:41 PM
Ha Ha...that should read, "not that any of you have any experience casing out houses" instead of "housing." Geez. I'm so ganster. :rolleyes:

dubhreubel
05-25-2010, 02:55 PM
I tend to think deter, and motion activated lights are even better, because they put a creeper into the spotlight suddenly and unexpectedly , and (I would think) would make them run instead if figuring out how to stay out of the light

GypsyMama2MEA
05-25-2010, 03:00 PM
i am hoping for deter also because I leave our on to keep it well it outside to keep us safe. we have had a lot of robberies in our area lately too.

Jerae
05-25-2010, 03:03 PM
It's really more about making your home look harder to get into (and away from without detection) than anyone else's.

Here's (http://www.googobits.com/articles/2657-easy-ways-to-burglar-proof-your-home.html) an article and if you google it, you'll find a ton of articles. I'd contact your local police department and ask them to come over and help you. You can also call them and request more patrols on your street when you're home alone.

Shan
05-25-2010, 03:04 PM
I tend to think deter, and motion activated lights are even better, because they put a creeper into the spotlight suddenly and unexpectedly , and (I would think) would make them run instead if figuring out how to stay out of the light

I agree with the motion lights. I think that the light on shows that someone is home and therefore would help to deter someone from breaking in.

mayasmommie
05-25-2010, 03:22 PM
i vote for motion lights, my only thinking with leaving a porch light on, is well like us, we only turn it on when we are not home, because when we are home, if it's on, it shines right into the living room, so i think that would be your call, but i personally don't think it will deter, i think a motion light would be better. someone tried to break into our home one night while i was home, and it was me turning on the front light when i heard them that made them take off. to me the light on would signal no one home

Mrs.Nicolian
05-25-2010, 03:25 PM
I would think deter.

crochetingmama
05-25-2010, 04:02 PM
I vote for motion lights and I think the light would deter someone, but not someone who was really intent on getting in.

marahbelle
05-25-2010, 04:10 PM
It would definitely deter them from trying to enter through the front of your house.

CaerRuthryis
05-25-2010, 04:31 PM
I think the motion lights are best, but if it's not an option, then leaving the light on is effective too. We are very cautious around here as we have livestock in the backyard and have had people try to mess with them at night. We have lights on all sides of the house and if we hear something, they all go on and the dogs get let out, lol. Turning the light on is what scared off the prowling teenagers last year. We heard *something* around 1 am, as we were just going to bed and as I turned the light on, I caught a glimpse of them running. We have an alarm too, but I hardly ever remember to set it and I never set it to go off the second something is opened as I am likely to forget and just open the door to let the dog out, lol. Also, a lot of alarm companies don't automatically call the cops, they call your house and sometimes another number before they call the cops. Make sure you are VERY clear on what is going to happen when the alarm goes off. Also, don't use Safe Home Security, they have some shady practices and have continued to bill (and report) customers who have tried to cancel service. I have heard the same of other alarm companies too, so be sure you know exactly what you are getting into when you do it. Alarms can be great, but can also be a hassle. The only thing I love about ours is there is a code I can enter that will shut off the alarm. It will alert the monitoring agency and they will automatically send the police to the house on an emergency call. They will not call the house first, so it "looks" like the alarm was set. Oh, and we have a back up battery in case the power goes out.
Truly, if someone REALLY wants to get into your house, they will and almost nothing will stop them. However, most small time criminals can be stopped with motion lights, alarms, deadbolts, dogs, etc.

Watermelandrea
05-25-2010, 04:33 PM
deter

serwachic
05-25-2010, 07:15 PM
That was my gut, too - that having a porch light on would make it less likely that someone would try to enter through the front. We do actually have a motion light on our garage door, so if someone tried to go around that side of the house, that light would turn on.

It sounds like the people who are doing this are most likely kids or just petty criminals looking to snag electronics, so I really just need to figure out ways to possibly scare or deter someone from breaking in.

The article JeRae posted is a really good one - you guys should check it out! I'm already feeling a little bit better about how safe our house is, though I do know we need to make some changes. Thanks so much for the input!

dubhreubel
05-25-2010, 07:30 PM
Interesting, that article was good, and not at all scary. I often refuse to read articles like that because they seem to be fear mongering instead of helping at all.

Seun
05-25-2010, 07:33 PM
A motion detecting light and an alarm system will probably work well together. The nice thing about the alarm system is that if you do have any doors or windows open, the light will show on the control panel. It won't tell you if they are locked, but at least you won't have open windows you forgot about.

Purple
05-25-2010, 07:41 PM
When we're sleeping, we tend to leave a light on in the house, as to make it seem like we are awake. Mainly a living room lamp which is visible through the front and rear of the house.

We leave our porch lights on at night and our motion sensors obviously.

serwachic
05-26-2010, 03:27 AM
When we're sleeping, we tend to leave a light on in the house, as to make it seem like we are awake. Mainly a living room lamp which is visible through the front and rear of the house.

We leave our porch lights on at night and our motion sensors obviously.

Hmmmm...that's a good idea. We leave one of our kitchen lights on, but it'd make more sense to make it a light that would be visible from the road. I hadn't thought of that - thanks!

MommyLovesStarWars
05-26-2010, 06:06 AM
Definitely motion lights if possible. But I think leaving the light on is a deterrent because it's hard to hide AND I think burglers might someone is home and left the light on for a spouse who's coming home.

~Rachel~
05-26-2010, 07:44 AM
I hope it's a deterrent. Since that crazy drunk girl tried to get into our house, we have them on by both the front and back doors.

Pinkee
05-26-2010, 07:50 AM
I tend to think deter, and motion activated lights are even better, because they put a creeper into the spotlight suddenly and unexpectedly , and (I would think) would make them run instead if figuring out how to stay out of the light
:yeahthat:

Thymeless
05-27-2010, 12:56 AM
I'd think it would deter them. You can also get (not that this would deter anyone but may put your mind at ease a bit) some kind of little gadget that anytime a door in the house is opened it gives a little Beep beep. Like in shops that have an internal bell to let them know customers walked in.