NO Stranger Gets in Your House. EVER.

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You're home alone and a stranger knocks on your door.  If you don't answer, they'll go away. Right? Not necessarily. It could be a burglar checking to see if anyone is home. If no one answers, he'll assume no one's there and break in.

If a stranger knocks on your door (or rings the bell), ask who it is. But don't open the door until you're sure it's safe. If you are alone, do not give them any indication that you are.

Related post: "Avoiding a Burglary... Secrets your Burglar Doesn't Want You to Know"

Find Out Who They Are

If they say they are law enforcement, a utility worker, delivery person, or whatever, ask for their name. Then call the appropriate business or organization to confirm they are legitimate.

If they say they need help, offer to call 911 for them. But don't open the door. They could be lying to try to get into your home.

Keep Doors and Windows Locked

Keep your doors and windows locked at all times, whether you are home or not.

If you open windows during a nice day, use a built-in latch device (or some other similar device) which makes it difficult to open the window any further. And always close and lock them at night.

Do you live in an apartment or dorm?

Don't let strangers follow you into your building. Just because they are holding a key, it doesn't mean that it fits the door to your building. Thugs gain access into dorms, apartment buildings, businesses, etc., this way. If it turns out you're wrong and they do live in the building, you can always apologize. Better to feel embarrassed than be assaulted!

For extra protection in apartments, dorm rooms, hotel rooms, etc., place a wedge-shaped door stop/alarm behind your door. If someone tries to get in, it not only keeps the door from opening, it also sets off an alarm to alert you (and might even scare off the thug as well).

Remember: No Stranger gets in your house. EVER! Even if someone is screaming to use your phone. Call 911 for them. Do NOT open your door. You do NOT want to be the unwilling participant of a horrific home invasion.

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Stay safe...