Dollar Defense: Protecting your home against thieves for $37

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Home break-ins happen almost every day in southern Nevada and police say part of the reason is that many of us make it "easy" for burglars to access our homes.

Many of us have had the misfortune of having to go through something like this.

You don't have to spend a ton of money on "burglar proofing" your home.

If I can do it, you know thieves certainly can--and they are!

"They're looking for cash. They're looking for gold jewelry, medications and then they're looking for your firearms", says LVMPD Crime Prevention Specialist Bella Yourgules-Scholes.

Thieves are looking for easy targets. Police say they often case properties well in advance, making note of the hour's homeowners are away.

Kassidy Lane is a Las Vegas area realtor.

"There are a lot of things you can do to deter people from breaking into your home that are really pretty inexpensive", says Lane.

Front and rear doors are the most common entry points.

Here's a piece of the trim board. It's only about a half-inch thick. This is hardly a deterrent for a would-be burglar", says Lane.

There is a simple and cheap fix that could make all the difference.

From kitchen and bedroom windows, to large sliding-glass windows, police say homeowners often leave them unlocked.

"You need to take away the opportunity", says Yourgules-Scholes.

Sliding glass doors should have more than one locking device. Usually, the handle lock just isn't enough. Same holds true for smaller windows.

Garage doors are another common access point, even if the door is closed.

Steve Wolf is a contractor with sustain builder. He says because standard garage doors are aluminum, that makes them bendable.

Just a small amount of pressure can provide access to the door latch.

There's a small fix that could do the trick.

"This won't cost you nothing. You just pull this up, tie a knot just like it is here, take some scissors, cut here. Make it harder for them to get in", says Yourgules-Scholes.

Finally, security cameras and surveillance systems are also great deterrents.

"If you don't want to break the bank, you can just purchase a decoy camera at most hardware stores. Also, add security stickers," says Yourgules-Scholes.

So, let's review.

Longer door jam screws will cost you about $2.50 at any hardware store.

Scrap wood for window sills is maybe $5 bucks at the most for a few pieces.

Tying off your garage door latch: zero.

Aftermarket window locks are about $3 each depending on which kind you buy.

Security stickers are $3.50 and decoy cameras are available at Walmart and various hardware stores for about $10 each.

Total cost: $37. A small price to pay for a little piece of mind.

LVMPD also encourages homeowners to consider setting up a Neighborhood Watch.

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