It’s that time of year again.
As pumpkin reigns king, Autumn reaches the peak of its power, and everything revolves around the season of falling leaves, caramel apples, kids in costumes, and candy corn.
Unfortunately, these festivities often include increased crime.
Trust us, we LOVE trick-or-treating—almost as much as the kiddos do 🙂 But, fear of the unknown should be reserved for haunted houses and scary movies, not whether or not your home and family are truly protected.
Here’s 9 tips (plus a BONUS checklist) for staying safe during the spookiest night of the year.
1. Make your home glow in the darkness. ✨💡
Whether you’re welcoming trick-or-treaters or not, keep your porch light on.
A brightly lit yard and entryway deters burglars (and eggers) who are after more than your candy. There’s a lesser chance they’ll attempt any thievery if your home is illuminated well.
Use exterior lights to chase away dark shadows. You can even choose fun themed lights to add to the ambiance of the night.
Your Simplx Security cameras with night vision will pick up suspicious activity around your home, but keep in mind that, even with night vision, it is easier to catch a burglar in the act if it isn’t pitch black.
To fool any would-be vandals, use your smart switch to set a timer for your lights both inside and outside. You can control them manually or create schedules around a certain time of day or night, so your home is protected.
Pro tip: Set random times for your lights. The point is to make it look natural.
2. Be on the lookout for “masked” intruders. 🎭
Even if you’re not a zombie-apocalypse prepper, it’s always a good idea to be on guard when opening your door to strangers (no matter how young or old they may appear). Be sure to have a backup plan just in case those vampires and mummies are up to more than collecting sweets and treats.
Halloween night is prime time for robbers to take advantage of unsuspecting folks who are expecting to see small children. They could try to force their way inside your door or sneak a peek at your valuables and return for them later, so take every precaution towards this end.
Keep your Simplx panic button handy, and have a discussion with the family before the trick-or-treating starts in your neighborhood. Make sure everyone knows the plan and how to call the police if necessary.
If you hand out candy during Halloween, sit on the porch with your candy bowl and another adult, and lock your front door. Make sure your cell phone is in your pocket and fully charged. And never be too shy to report suspicious activity.
3. Throw a bash. 🥳 🎉
One of the best ways to avoid security incidents at your home is to invite friends and family to a Halloween party at your place! This is the best way to keep an eye on your stuff and your loved ones while having a great time celebrating the spooky holiday.
Be sure to have clear signs on the bathroom door and lock any doors to the rooms that guests are not to enter.
Enlist the adults to take shifts keeping an eye on your home while groups go out to trick-or-treat. This ensures your house is never empty. It’s true that there’s safety in numbers.
4. Protect your empty home. 🏠 👀
If you plan to be away from home on Halloween, make sure to check your Simplx Security system. The last thing you need is a false alarm coming from easily avoidable things like low batteries beeping or cobwebs tripping motion detectors.
Use your alarm app to lock up before you leave and make sure everyone on your call list knows the emergency password with our monitoring center.
Look at your security cameras before leaving the house and check that any notifications are set to inform you of suspicious activity.
Let your neighbors know you’re not going to be there, so they are aware and can call the police if they see anyone lurking around your home.
5. Be respectful of the neighborhood hours. 🏘️
Most neighborhoods have a designated time for trick-or-treating, so folks can be prepared for the little fairies and ninja turtles that show up knocking at their door.
Make sure you check the rules for the area you’ll be in, and stick to the curfew times within each subdivision. This also applies to your neighborhood. Look up the window of activity for your area, so you know when to expect the mini goblins on your doorstep.
Remember, other homes have security systems as well. Be sure to remind your kids that if there’s no answer after a couple of knocks, they need to move on.
Keep to areas that have lots of homes, so your kids can get in as much trick-or-treating as possible in a few hours time. Whatever you do, don’t hang around knocking on doors after hours. You don’t want the police called on you or worse…your child snatched away.
6. Stay on the main walkways or roads. 🚧
Don’t cut through backyards, alleyways or fields. Do not veer off the beaten path.
For your safety as well as others’, keep to populated areas, and make sure your kids know the dangers of wandering off alone. It’s best to stay in well-lit areas with lots of people around.
If the kids are going out alone, give them a fully charged cell phone with emergency numbers on speed dial.
They should be old enough to know what to watch for and how to avoid bad situations, but always remind them to stick together and to call for help if they sense any danger.
7. Check EVERY treat and trinket. 🍭🍬🍫
Razor blades in Halloween candy are a rare find these days (thank goodness). But, unfortunately, they seem to have been replaced by things such as marijuana, illicit substances, and alcohol, hence becoming a problem for some cities across America.
Always, always, always, check every part of your child’s gatherings before eating or opening any goodies.
8. Set yourself up for the win. 📝✔️✔️✔️
Yes, we’ve all had it drummed into our heads: STRANGER DANGER! It’ll always bear repeating. But there are lots of things you simply don’t think about until you have to.
Here’s a quick checklist of topics to go over with your family.
- DO NOT get into a stranger’s vehicle.
- DO NOT go into ANY stranger’s home.
- DO NOT follow or talk to adults you don’t know.
- DO NOT eat any treats before coming home to check them first.
- DO NOT TP someone’s home if they aren’t passing out candy.
- BE RESPECTFUL of others and obey traffic signals; don’t jay walk.
- PREPARE FOR SCARY moments from house decor or residents that intend to scare.
- WEAR REFLECTIVE clothes or at least have elements that glow in some way.
- STAY IN GROUPS or have a buddy system.
- MAKE EYE CONTACT with any suspicious strangers.
- HAVE A SAFE WORD ready in case you need to call a friend to pick up the kids.
- TEST YOUR SECURITY SYSTEM, and train your kids how to use it.
- DO NOT POST ON SOCIAL MEDIA where you intend to go or any details of the night’s plans.
- LEAVE PETS AT HOME or keep them on a leash that’s held by an adult.
- BEWARE OF OPEN FLAMES around dangling costume pieces.
- GO WITH YOUR GUT. Use common sense in uncertain situations.
Have a serious conversation with your kids about these topics and talk about how to handle them if they should ever happen.
9. Check your area for sex offenders. 🙅🚫
It’s a terrible thing, but the reality of this danger must be taken seriously. Make sure your kids stay away from these houses. If possible, find a different neighborhood to trick-or-treat in.
Go to https://www.icrimewatch.net/index.php?AgencyID=54034 to check for Fort Wayne area registered offenders.
Or visit https://www.icrimewatch.net/indiana.php to search for offenders by county in the state of Indiana.
Even though it may seem like a lot of precautions to take, Halloween can be a very fun and very safe time of year to make family memories that last a lifetime!
Just remember, luck favors the prepared, so do your due diligence with these tips, throw on your supporting-act costume, and enjoy a spooky-kooky night with your little ghouly monsters. 👻
P.S. Don’t forget to collect a few treats for yourself. You’re a kid at heart too, ya know. 😌
Stay safe and have fun!
We’ve got you covered!
Have questions? We’re here to be helpful in any way we can.
At Simplx Security, our mission is protecting what matters most to you. It’s vital that you continue to feel safe and trust that your security system will do its job well. One of the best benefits of having a local security company monitor your system is you’re partnered with folks who understand your area and are right around the corner! We’re here to help you if any further troubleshooting is required.
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Call the office: 260-482-7233Visit us at: 8320 N Clinton Park Drive, Fort Wayne, IN 46825