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How to protect your home from increased break-ins during summer months

Break-ins increase during summer in Metro Detroit

DETROIT – Summer brings a major spike in home break-ins, so Local 4's Help Me Hank spoke with security experts about what really works to protect a home.

There has already been an increase in these types of crimes in June, but there are several tricks to make breaking in harder for the bad guys.

Your home is likely your biggest investment, and protecting it should be on your mind, especially right now. During the summer months in Metro Detroit, home break-ins increase more than 50 percent in some areas.

Retired Detroit police Detective Tom Berry talked with Hank Winchester about what works and what doesn't.

"What we like to see with these lights, we'd like to see a motion sensor, as well as in the rear of your house and the porch area," Berry said. "If somebody walks by here at night, even an animal, that light's going to go off. It's going to illuminate this area."

As for security cameras, they do work. Even a fake one mounted outside might be enough to keep possible thieves away. You can get some for as little as $10.

"If you've got an old camera lying around, if you've got a broken camera, put a camera on the four corners of your house, because when a thief's going to break into your home, he's going to see if there's a camera," Berry said.

Make an investment in doors and locks, because they're the first line of defense.

"I like to see a key deadbolt," Berry said.

How can you throw thieves off? There are some simple, affordable ideas.

Instead of hiding valuables in a safe, which crooks will take with them, put them in a box. Label the box something generic to throw them off.

You can also put items such as watches and rings in a vase. Throw in some fake flowers.

If you wrap items in a freezer bag, put them in an empty package of vegetables, for example, to throw off thieves.

Keyless entry locks offer two levels of protection and can be locked or unlocked using an app.

Home alarms work, but they can be pricey. You can buy generic alarm signs to place in your yard, which can alone be enough to ward off some criminals.

Cameras that help capture images of break-ins are key in helping police find thieves. A "beware of dog" sign might also scare off some people.

You can watch Help Me Hank's full story in the video posted above.