It’s always unpleasant and stressful when someone breaks into your home. You feel like they’ve invaded your personal space, and even if all your belongings are covered by your insurance, it’s frustrating to need to replace them. And some personal heirlooms can’t truly be replaced. Although a break-in could happen to anyone, when you understand how thieves think, you can secure your home and make it a less likely target. Here are four easy tricks that can help you avert a break-in.

Conceal Anything that Could Attract a Thief

Most thieves don’t just break into a house at random. They case a neighborhood to pick out the best targets, and when they do, they’re looking for homes where they can get in easily without attracting attention and score big-ticket items for their trouble.

That’s why step one in home security is making it hard for thieves to figure out what you have. Keep as much as you can either in your home or your garage, and close the curtains to your home so that people can’t see inside. Thieves are less likely to even bother with your home if they don’t know what you have inside.

Lock All Your Doors and Windows

This goes back to thieves wanting a home that they can get in easily. The quickest, easiest options are entering through a door or window that was left unlocked. Go through your home and make sure that you haven’t left anything unlocked because you forgot about it or simply for convenience’s sake.

Another common mistake people make is leaving a spare key outside, which is about as bad as leaving a door unlocked. Thieves know all the most common spare key hiding spots. Don’t think you’re going to fool them with yours. Leave your spare with a family member or friend instead.

Set up Motion Sensor Lights and an Alarm

The name of the game for a thief is getting in without attracting attention from passersby, the neighbors or law enforcement. Lights and loud noises signaling that there’s an intruder will drive away all but the most determined thieves.

It’s simple enough to install motion sensor lights around your property and an alarm that goes off if the correct code isn’t entered. If you live anywhere with other houses in the immediate vicinity, it’s unlikely a thief would continue a break-in attempt after those go off.

Contact a Home Security Service

To get the peace of mind that comes with knowing you have the most secure form of protection, you’ll want to get in touch with a home security service like AMP Security or someone similar. There are different types of home security protection available, but they typically include installation of motion sensor lights and an alarm for you, plus a monitoring service in case of an unauthorized entry.

With the monitoring service, if someone breaks into your home, the security company will call the home phone line and ask for a password that you previously selected. If there’s no answer or someone gets on the phone but can’t provide the correct password, then the security company contacts the local police department.

There’s nothing too complicated about securing your home. It primarily involves considering what thieves will be looking for before they attempt a break-in, and make sure your home has everything those thieves don’t want, including bright lights, loud noises, a security company providing a monitoring service, and no obvious indication of whether the home even contains any valuable items.